The term ‘living Will’ is sometimes used to refer to legal documents called advance decisions and advance statements. Advance decisions and advance statements allow you to set out your preferences for medical or life-sustaining treatment in the future.
These documents are particularly helpful if you want to be confident that your wishes would be known in the event that you were unable to communicate them to medical professionals. This situation might arise if you were diagnosed with a condition such as dementia, or if you were unconscious following an accident or medical emergency.
Depending on your circumstances, you may be able to use an advance decision or advance statement to refuse life-sustaining treatment such as resuscitation, life-support, blood transfusion or transplant. You may also be able to use this type of document to make your preferences clear for the type of medical treatment or care you would like to receive.
If you’re concerned about how to make sure your medical wishes are known in the future, we can advise you on how best to do this. An advance decision or advance statement might be a good solution for you, or a Lasting Power of Attorney might be a better fit. Please get in touch if you would like to talk through your options.