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What is a living will?

At some point in our lives, it will be important for us to consider what will happen in the future if we become unable to communicate or make decisions for ourselves.

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Living will

A living will allows you to state your wishes regarding whether you want to refuse any medical treatment in the future. This would become applicable if you are unable to make decisions for yourselves. You can refuse any treatment regardless of whether doing so may result in your death. Legally, it is binding upon anybody whose care you are in, and they are obliged to follow your wishes. It can only be used, however, if you become incapacitated.

Making such decisions has always been a controversial. It is important to think carefully about any treatments you would not want to receive in particular circumstances. You may wish to consider this matter with a professional in healthcare who is aware of your complete medical history, together with the benefits and risks of refusing to allow certain treatments. In addition, you may wish to discuss the matter with family members and friends so they understand the content of your wishes.

Rules regarding living wills

Any decision made in advance refusing treatment must be extremely clear regarding the circumstances in which you do not want the treatment specified. You will need to state whether you wish to have the specified treatment even if refusing it would result in your death. A living will cannot be used to ask for certain treatments, nor can it be used to ask for the termination of your life. Should you require any further advice, Manchester solicitors such as https://bridgelawsolicitors.co.uk/offices/knutsford/ will be able to help.

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How to make a living will

You do not need to put it in writing unless it contains a refusal related to life-sustaining treatment. However, it is always a good idea to get the information in writing and give copies to your family members and anybody else who may be involved in caring for you in order to avoid any ambiguities. It is wise to review the document on a regular basis just in case your feelings change, in which case you need to be clear about your change of mind and record it. Make sure you sign and date it.

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