An advance directive serves as a road map for a family when the person in question is no longer capable of making important decisions. It tells loved ones and medical professionals which medical treatments a person wishes to receive—or refuse—and under what conditions. Many people first consider and create advance directives when they initially create estate plans.

As time passes, however, a person’s desires may change. The same man may want more medical interventions at age 35 than he would desire at age 70. Likewise, a person facing a terminal illness may change her views about which treatments should be attempted as her disease progresses. That’s why it’s important to review and update advance directives. An attorney can review your plan to determine if it still meets your needs. If not, the attorney can help you revise your plan or create a new one that reflects your current needs.

Once you have an updated plan in place, let your family members know. Keep your documents in a safe, accessible place so that your family members can easily retrieve them in an emergency. You may also wish to leave a copy with your doctor.

Contact our Orange County estate planning lawyers at  (714) 459-5481 or fill out an online contact form if you would like to speak to us about creating or updating an advance directive. We work with clients in Orange, Anaheim, Villa Park, Yorba Linda, Fullerton, Huntington Beach, Placentia, Santa Ana, Irvine, Garden Grove, and La Habra.

James F. Roberts
Founder and owner of the Law Office of James F. Roberts and Associates, a premiere estate planning law firm
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