You may be among the lucky ones who never have to experience a life-changing disability, but since you won’t know until it does or doesn’t happen, you should always be prepared. You can prepare for a possible disability with the help of your attorney and a solid Disability Plan.
If you become mentally or physically disabled to the extreme of not being able to make your own choices, you need someone to assist with your medical decisions. With a Disability Plan you can sign an Advance Medical Directive, also called an Advance Health Care Directive or a Medical Power of Attorney. Your medical directive will allow you to name a loved one to act as your health care advocate. This person will have access to information a doctor would normally provide to you only. Your agent will use the information supplied to making any necessary health care decisions on your behalf.
If you do not have a legal plan that names a health care agent, then a court of law will choose an advocate for you through a conservatorship or guardianship. A court-imposed guardianship can cause many problems within your family if some of your loved ones do not agree with the selected guardian. Also, your guardian may not be the person you feel would be best at making decisions for you. When you name a health care advocate in advance, you have time to speak with your advocate to make sure he or she understand your wishes and can seamlessly take over your health care when it is time.
State your Medical Preferences
You should also have a Disability Plan in order to state your medical preferences. You can do so with the help of a Living Will. If you do not advise of your medical wishes in advance, your chosen advocate or your court-ordered guardian will have to guess at the type of medical treatment you would have chosen.