Posted on: October 5th, 2021 by EOS Healthcare Marketing
Can a family member override an advance directive?
One of the greatest benefits of making an advance directive is the peace of mind you get from knowing your healthcare wishes will be followed, even when you can no longer make those decisions yourself. You may be wondering how solid of a document an advance directive really is. For example, is it possible for a family member to override it? Let’s take a closer look at this possibility.
An advance directive is a legal document. When you make an advance directive in compliance with your state’s laws, you are creating a legal document that is binding.
A doctor determines when you are permanently unconscious or terminally ill. The condition you are in needs to be agreed upon by a medical professional, not a family member. If the doctor says you are no longer able to make medical decisions by yourself, then your advance directive can be put into effect.
No one can change your advance directive without your permission.If you want to change it, you can do that, but no one else can do it without your knowledge.
Your appointed healthcare agent can make medical decisions for you. In your advance directive, you can appoint a healthcare agent, or a healthcare power of attorney, to make decisions on your behalf. You should be able to trust this person, and you should let this person know your preferences for end-of-life care.
The doctor could override your advance directive. In the end, the doctor has the final word on your medical treatment. Most doctors will respect your advance directive, but in some cases, a certain medical issue may arise that you did not anticipate.
In short, it is possible for a doctor or your appointed healthcare agent to make medical decisions on your behalf that are different from what you write in your advance directive. Any other person would not have the opportunity to override your advance directive. If you have concerns about this, you can discuss them with your appointed healthcare agent and doctor, so they fully understand your wishes.
If you would like to get started on your end-of-life planning, please contact us now. We help you prepare the various documents and answer your questions.