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How Important is a Living Will in Ohio?

How Important is a Living Will in Ohio?
August 7, 2018 Shannon Dawes

At some point in your life, you have probably been encouraged to create a living will, but do you really need one? How important is a living will in Ohio?

Living wills can provide significant protection for you and your family, but you might be struggling with the idea of creating one. Learning about the benefits of a living will is the best way to decide whether it is the right option for you.

A living will is also known as an advanced health care directive. In a living will, you commit to writing your wishes for medical treatment in the event that you become mentally incapacitate or too ill to make your own medical decisions. There are numerous benefits to creating a living will, including:

  1. Peace of mind that your wishes will be honored. You likely know what actions you would like doctors to take or not take if you become incapacitated. You have likely also discussed this with at least one relative. The best way to be completely sure your wishes will be carried out, however, is to memorialize them in a legal document. When your health care directive is presented to your doctors, they will honor it.
  2. Decreased pressure on your family members. Without a living will, doctors will turn to family members for important medical decisions. When grappling with an already tragic situation, it can be emotionally overwhelming for family members to be faced with trying to decide what you would have wanted. When you create a health care directive, you take this burden off your family’s shoulders.
  3. Preventing arguments among family members. When a person becomes incapacitated, it is not uncommon for people, particularly spouses and parents, to fight about the decision to withdraw life support. Some family fights about this type of medical care have been covered in national media. These situations are traumatic, and when people are hurting, they can easily turn their grief into anger. Family members are trying to make sense of a tragedy and turn against each other when it comes to major decisions. You can avoid these fights entirely by drafting a living will. Through your living will, all of your family members will understand the decisions you have already made, and they will not have any reason to fight about those decisions.

No one wants to think about the end of life or about the traumatic situations covered by living wills. But it is much better to overcome your discomfort now and take steps to protect yourself and your family. Through a living will, you can avoid placing a decision-making burden on your family and ensure your wishes are carried out. Dawes Legal can help you create a valid living will and ease the stress of this situation. If you are interested in a living will or advance health care directive, contact Dawes Legal, LLC, today by calling (614) 733-9999.