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What if an adult child disagrees with your medical wishes?

On Behalf of | Jun 8, 2021 | Powers Of Attorney |

You may want to take steps to relate your medical wishes to your family and/or your medical team as part of your estate plan. There are a few ways to do this, such as creating a medical directive for the doctors to follow or using a medical power of attorney to transfer decision-making power to someone else. 

But what if you make a decision and your child disagrees with it? For instance, maybe you do not want to be resuscitated, so you have a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order. Your child thinks that all means should be used to keep you alive. Do they have any say in the matter?

Legal documents about your medical care are binding

Legally, these are your decisions to make. Your children generally cannot override your legal documents. They’re binding, and they’ll be followed by the medical team. 

However, you still want to avoid putting this stress on your children or creating a situation where they disagree with one another on what should be done. To this end, it can be helpful to talk to them in advance, as you make your estate plan. Explain your thinking and the reason for it. Talk to them about their concerns. Let them tell you what they want and ask questions about your plan. These family meetings can be invaluable in getting everyone on the same page, even if they are never going to completely agree with your decisions. 

Setting up your estate plans and preparing for the future

Ultimately, you get to create your estate plan in any way that you want. Just make sure you know what legal steps to take to get everything in place so that your wishes for the future are respected. Powers of attorney for your medical needs and other legal documents can give you some reassurance.

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