Document end-of-life care wishes

Plan for the Future

Many unique concerns might impact end of life care.

Planning for end of life means determining how you’ll spend your last days.

It also addresses affairs to be managed in this period and immediately following your passing.

Helpful Tips


There are several medical procedures and options to be evaluated by a person creating a living will.

If you have specific wishes regarding any of them, those concerns should be spelled out clearly in your living will.

They include whether or not you:

  • Want to receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) if your heart stops beating
  • Want to receive tube feeding and if so, for how long
  • Want to receive dialysis treatments
  • Want to use antiviral or antibiotic medications
  • Want palliative care (such as being allowed to pass away at home, receive pain medications, or receive invasive tests at end of life.)
  • Want to donate tissue or organs
  • Want to receive mechanical ventilation (breathing support) and if so, for how long
  • Want to donate your body to science

Personal Considerations


Do you have a living will?


Review this document at least once a year.

If your preferences have changed or if the appointed person is no longer willing or able to serve, work with an estate planning lawyer to update this.


Consider creating one with the help of an estate planning lawyer.

Guides_Icon.svgRead More For more information, see the task "Document advance medical directive".


If you have a living will:

Review this document at least once a year.

If your preferences have changed or if the appointed person is no longer willing or able to serve, work with an estate planning lawyer to update this.

If you do not have a living will:

Consider creating one with the help of an estate planning lawyer.

Guides_Icon.svgRead More For more information, see the task "Document advance medical directive".


Have you designated a medical power of attorney?


Make sure this person is aware of their appointment and any specific instructions you’d like for them to know if and when they need to serve.


Consider if and when you’d like to appoint someone to this role and which powers you’d like for them to have.

It is best to work directly with an estate planning lawyer to create this document to ensure it follows your wishes and complies with any state laws.


If you have designated a medical power of attorney:

Make sure this person is aware of their appointment and any specific instructions you’d like for them to know if and when they need to serve.

If you do not have a medical power of attorney:

Consider if and when you’d like to appoint someone to this role and which powers you’d like for them to have.

It is best to work directly with an estate planning lawyer to create this document to ensure it follows your wishes and complies with any state laws.

Providers to Contact


Estate Attorneys Near You

Estate planning attorneys can help you plan for your incapacity or death. They can also document your wishes in compliance with your state’s laws.

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Plan for the Future