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Frequently Asked Questions

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Expand/Contract Questions and Answers

  • Why should I consider writing an advance directive?

  • When does my advance directive take effect?

  • What happens if I regain the ability to make my own decisions?

  • What is the advantage of having a health care representative, isn't it enough to have an instruction directive?

  • If I decide to appoint a health care representative, who should I trust with this task?

  • Should I discuss my wishes with my health care representative and others?

  • Does my health care representative have the authority to make all health care decisions for me?

  • Is my doctor obligated to talk to my health care representative?

  • Is my health care representative the only person who can speak for me, or can other friends or family members participate in making treatment decisions?

  • If I want to give specific instructions about my medical care, what should I say?

  • Are there particular treatments I should specifically mention in my directive?

  • Can I request all measures be taken to sustain my life?

  • Does my doctor have to carry out my wishes as stated in my instruction directive?

  • Can I make changes in my directive?

  • Can I revoke my directive at any time?

  • Who should have copies of my advance directive?

  • Can I be required to sign an advance directive?

  • Can I be required to complete an advance directive as a condition of my insurance coverage?

  • Can I use my advance directive to make an organ donation upon my death?

  • Will another state honor my advance directive?

  • What if I already have a living will?

  • Do I need an attorney or a doctor to write one?