Planning for Life

You Don't Need a Lawyer for Your Advance Directive

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on May 19, 2020

By Harry S. Margolis

advance-directive-health-care-proxy-elder-law-attorney-Wellesley-MA

While we include health care proxies in all the estate planning packages we prepare for clients, you don't need a lawyer to get one. Hospitals and other medical facilities commonly hand out the form created by the Massachusetts Medical Society, which you can also download here.

Just print out the form, choose your agent and a successor, in case your original choice is unavailable, and sign the document before two witnesses.

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Topics: health-care decision making, HIPAA release, health care proxy, coronavirus

What Happens in Massachusetts if You Don't have a Health Care Proxy?

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on March 12, 2019

By Harry S. Margolis

Margolis-and-Bloom-Wellesley-Health-Care-Proxy

As long as we are 18 or over and have our wits together, we all have the right to make our own health care decisions. But what happens when we become incapacitated, whether temporarily or permanently, and cannot make such decisions?

Then, legally, only a court-appointed guardian or an agent under a health care proxy can make decisions for us. In an emergency, medical providers can take measures to keep us alive, but once the emergency has passed, no one has the right to step in and make decisions in the absence of a health care proxy or guardianship appointment.

 

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Topics: health-care decision making, health care proxy

New End-of-Life Resource in Massachusetts

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on July 10, 2018

By Harry S. Margolis

end-of-life-resource-elder-law-attorney-Wellesley-MA

A new website offers information and resources for individuals and families facing end-of-life challenges. It is designed as both a destination itself with answers to questions about end-of-life topics and as a directory of services in the community. The website, www.endwithcare.org, grew out of the work of the Massachusetts Commission on End of Life Care and the Massachusetts Experts Panel on End of Life Care, which in 2014 came out with the report, Looking Forward: 2014 and Beyond

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Topics: end-of-life, caregiving, health-care decision making, Caregivers

Can You Name More Than One Person on a Health Care Proxy?

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on November 28, 2017

By Harry S. Margolis

health-care-proxy-elder-law-Wellesley-MA

We advise all of our clients to name an agent under a health care proxy to make health care decisions for them when and if they cannot do so for themselves. Many clients want to name more than one person to this role.

They may not want to be seeming to play favorites by choosing one child over others. Or, more often, they want any health care decisions to be made by all of their children acting together. After all, these can be life and death decisions.

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Topics: health-care decision making, health care proxy

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