Advance Health Care Directive
Trust in Our Tarzana Estate Planning Lawyers
Everyone who is over the age of 18 needs an Advance Health Care Directive
(AHCD). As part of a comprehensive estate plan, this document is essential
to ensuring your family avoids court and your healthcare wishes are honored.
Don’t make assumptions that people will know what you want. Let us
help you put your wishes in writing. Whether your wishes have changed
and you need to update your documents, or if you would like to get started
on your estate plan, the Tarzana attorneys at Goldfarb & Luu can help.
Call us today at 800.489.1984 to schedule your complimentary initial consultation.
What Is an Advance Directive?
In California, an Advance Health Care Directive combines two essential
documents that govern your healthcare:
- A Living Will
- A Health Care Power of Attorney
The Living Will memorializes your healthcare wishes to enable your designated
Power of Attorney to make medical decisions on your behalf. Known as your
Health Care Agent, this person can also sign consent and medical releases
and access your medical records when you are incapacitated or otherwise
unable to make decisions for yourself.
The details of an AHCD should be carefully considered while you are healthy
and able to think through quality of life issues and appropriate medical
treatments. The more details that are included, the easier it is when
family or close friends need to make difficult choices in emotionally
Do I Need an Advance Health Care Directive?
MYTH #1: I can make health care decisions for my spouse, aging parent or young adult
child right now.
It comes as a surprise for many people that they cannot legally make decisions
for a spouse, aging parent or adult child without a properly executed
AHCD. The fact of your familial relationship does not itself give you
the legal authority to act for a family member – it merely gives
you a priority to be appointed as conservator.
MYTH #2: I can create an AHCD when I need it.
You can only create an AHCD when you have capacity, which is generally
too late if you need it. If you are unable to create one, you and your
family must go through the expensive and invasive court process known
as a conservatorship. Once created, a conservatorship usually is permanent.
Our Goldfarb & Luu team has personally cared for many family members
and we have guided hundreds of clients through the maze of the health
care system and the process of aging, illness, disability and death. We
value an extremely detailed AHCD for all of our clients and work with
you and your family to create a legally-binding document that meets your needs.
If you would like to learn more, please do not hesitate to contact Goldfarb & Luu online. We help clients throughout Los Angeles, Ventura and Orange counties.