Like many people, you may have very strong opinions about medical treatment, particularly as it pertains to end of life treatment decisions. After all, we all make thousands of seemingly unimportant decisions on a daily basis so it only seems fair to be able to make important life and death decisions regarding your medical care and treatment right? What happens though if you are incapacitated and unable to tell healthcare providers what your wishes are regarding treatment? The solution is to execute a Living Will in South Carolina.
A Living Will is a type of advanced directive. An advance directive is a legal document that expresses your wishes with regard to some aspect of medical care or treatment to be used in the vent you are unable to express those wishes at some point in the future. A Living Will allows you to make decisions in writing about care or treatment that you specifically do, or do not, wish to receive.
In the State of South Carolina a Living Will allows you to decide whether or not you wish to receive life sustaining treatment under certain circumstances. Specifically, your Living Will is used if two physicians have examined you and concluded that one of the two following circumstances exists:
You have been diagnosed with a terminal illness and death is expected to occur within a reasonably short period of time without life-sustaining treatment. OR
You are in a persistent vegetative state or other condition of permanent unconsciousness
Once it has been established that one of the two above conditions applies, your Living Will is used to determine if nutrition and hydration will, or will not, be provided through any medically indicated means, including medically or surgically implanted tubes.
In South Carolina, you also have the option to name an Agent in your Living Will who will have the legal authority to revoke the declarations made in the document.
Although executing a Living Will or other advanced directive is often a wise decisions when creating your comprehensive estate plan, it is not a decision that should be made lightly nor without the assistance of your South Carolina estate planning attorney. Contact the experienced South Carolina estate planning attorneys at Kuhn & Kuhn Law Firm by calling 843-577-3700 to schedule your appointment so that you may discuss your legal options relating to advanced directives and other end of life decisions.
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