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David Toback, Attorney at Law
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Tampa Living Wills Attorney

What Is A Living Will?

A living will is a legal document that allows you to dictate certain end-of-life medical procedures. Specifically, a living will lets you choose whether you want any life prolonging measures to be taken if you face a terminal accident or condition. Unlike a legal will, a living will does not involve your estate or property. Instead, a living will allows you to set your wishes regarding the end of your life. This legal tool allows you to make preparations in case you become incapacitated in the future. If that happens, you want to make sure your care provider and family know what do if you are facing terminal or end stage condition, or a permanent vegetative state. Contact our Tampa living wills attorney for more information.

Why Should I Have One?

There are numerous benefits to executing a living will. First and foremost, you can rest assured that your medical choices will be respected. If you have strong feelings about life-saving measures, it is important to draft a living will. This document allows you to clarify exactly what treatment you do or do not want. Another benefit is providing that same peace of mind to your family. Often, when a loved one is struggling against a terminal condition, families are torn about what medical steps to take. Your living will can save your loved ones the pain of deciding whether to take life-prolonging measures during a time of tragedy.

Like many people, you may have already had a conversation with your family about such a scenario. You might be wondering how a living will is different than that conversation. Since a living will is a legal document, your family and medical care providers are obligated to follow it. This means that, with a valid living will, you can reduce familial conflict about your end-of-life care. Of course, it is important to discuss these things with loved ones. However, your family may not accurately recall your wishes, or may not be prepared to act upon them. With a living will, you add clarity to an inherently confusing situation, which benefits everyone involved. Our Tampa wills attorney can help.

Creating a Valid Living Will

Just like with a legal will, Florida law defines what makes a living will valid; only valid living wills can be honored. Three important requirements are:

  • The living will is in writing;
  • It is signed by the maker (you) in front of two witnesses; and
  • At least one witness must not be a spouse or blood relative.

After creating and signing the living will, you next have to deliver it to your doctor or care provider. Your physician or hospital will have no way of knowing your wishes without a copy of the document. Like any legal document, there are important considerations to take when drafting your living will. Your estate planning lawyer can guide through this process.

Tampa Wills & Trusts Attorney Can Help

Now is the time to think about what may happen if you become incapacitated in the future. David Toback, Attorney at Law, understands this can an emotional process, and is here to help you. For over 17 years, he has helped Tampa residents plan for the future in regard to wills, trusts and estate planning. To find out how he can help you, contact David Toback and schedule your consultation.

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