Our Attorneys Answer the Following Frequently Asked Questions About Creating an Advance Directive in Colorado
Planning for the future is important. You may choose to create a will or trust to manage and protect your assets and property. However, estate planning is not solely about allocating your assets. You should also address your end-of-life wishes and objectives. An advance directive in Colorado can help you plan for times where you may require medical care but are no longer able to make your own treatment decisions. You can share this document with your family, friends and healthcare providers.
At Skipton Law, LLC, our attorneys have years of experience helping people with advance care planning. We can help you document your medical preferences through an advance directive in Colorado. The decisions you make are often based on your personal values, beliefs and preferences.
The attorneys at our estate planning firm will respect your wishes and ensure they are upheld. We have answered the following list of frequently asked questions about Colorado advance directives. If you have additional questions, then please contact us to schedule a consultation. We look forward to giving you peace of mind by helping you prepare for your medical future.
Advance Directive in Colorado Frequently Asked Questions
- What Does Advance Health Directive Mean?
- What Is Included in an Advanced Health Directive?
- Who Should Have an Advanced Directive?
- How Do I Complete an Advanced Health Directive?
- Do I Need a Lawyer for an Advance Directive?
- How Often Should I Update My Advance Directive?
- Do Advance Healthcare Directives Expire?
- Does an Advance Directive in Colorado Have to Be Notarized?
What Does Advance Health Directive Mean?
An advance health directive is a legal document that gives you the opportunity to list your end-of-life wishes. If you are physically or mentally incapacitated, then your doctor will not know what type of treatment you wish to receive. Other parties may have the power to make medical decisions on your behalf. An advance health directive lets you articulate your wishes in a way that is clear and legally binding.
What Is Included in an Advanced Health Directive?
There are a number of things you can include in an advanced health directive. You can choose whether you wish to receive support machinery, respirators, feeding tubes and other medical devices. Additionally, there are several types of advanced health directives you can create.
- Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Directive
- Medical Durable Power of Attorney
- Living Will
It is vital that you consult with an attorney when beginning the advance care planning process. He or she can help you determine which documents fit your particular needs. Contact our legal team to schedule an initial consultation with an estate planning lawyer.
Who Should Have an Advanced Directive?
Most people assume that an advanced directive is something they should create when they are older. However, this is not the case. Many young people find themselves in situations where they are unable to make their own healthcare decisions. For this reason, we recommend that everyone over the age of 18 create an advanced directive. It is crucial that you engage in advanced care planning while you still have the opportunity to do so.
How Do I Complete an Advanced Health Directive?
In the State of Colorado, your advanced health directive does not need to follow a specific format or structure. It simply needs to meet the requirements of state law. There are premade forms you can download. Working with a template makes it easier to ensure you have left nothing out.
However, we do recommend having an attorney help you complete an advanced health directive. An attorney can ensure that your document clearly states your wishes. He or she can also guarantee the documents you create are legally binding. Additionally, he or she can deliver your documents to anyone involved in your medical care. This includes your doctors and your medical power of attorney in Colorado.
Do I Need a Lawyer for an Advance Directive?
You do not need a lawyer for an advance directive. However, we recommend that you work with one for several reasons. First, a lawyer can ensure that your documents are mistake free. The decisions you make in an advance directive are important. You do not want any missteps that could affect the type of medical treatment you receive.
Second, an experienced lawyer will know things about end-of-life care that you do not. He or she can direct your focus towards issues you may have never even considered. At Skipton Law, LLC, our estate planning lawyers will make sure your documents cover every aspect of your end-of-life care. Our goal is to make your advance care planning as comprehensive as possible.
Finally, a lawyer can help you select which type of documents to create. You may decide to appoint someone to make important healthcare decisions on your behalf. In this case, you would need to create a document designating a medical power of attorney. A lawyer will help you create this document. He or she will also advise you to review your documents every couple of years. You may decide your medical power of attorney is no longer a trustworthy person. If this is the case, then a lawyer can help you update your document and appoint a new medical power of attorney.
How Often Should I Update My Advance Directive?
You should review your advance directive in Colorado regularly. You may find that your end-of-life wishes have changed. If so, then you should make the necessary updates. Our attorneys recommend reviewing your documents every couple of years. However, you should also review and/or update your advance directive after the following life events.
- Death of a family member or close friend
- You or one of your named agents receives a serious medical diagnosis
- Change in your living situation
An attorney at our firm can assist you throughout the advance care planning process. This includes making updates to your advance directive. Call today to receive the help of our Colorado estate planning attorneys.
Do Advance Healthcare Directives Expire?
No. Advance healthcare directives do not expire. However, you can invalidate your advance healthcare directive by creating a new one to take its place. Our estate planning lawyers recommend reviewing your documents every couple of years to ensure they reflect your wishes. If your wishes have changed, then we can help you make the necessary updates.
Does an Advance Directive in Colorado Have to Be Notarized?
Many states require notarization of advance directive forms. Colorado provides its residents with more flexibility. Notarization is not required when creating a medical durable power of attorney, CPR directive or a living will. However, your document may require witnesses in order to become official. At Skipton Law, LLC we can help you determine whether you need witnesses to create the documents you need. It is advisable to have your documents both notarized and witnessed so that they are valid in ALL states, not just Colorado. At Skipton Law, our medical power of attorney and advanced directives include these critical features.
Speak With an Estate Planning Attorney
Are you looking to create an advance directive in Colorado? If so, then please contact our office through our website or by calling us at (720) 613-2633. An estate planning attorney at Skipton Law, LLC can help you put your medical wishes in writing. We can also help you name a healthcare agent before it is too late.
If you need flexibility during the coronavirus pandemic, then do not worry. Our office has you covered. We offer appointments through phone or video conferencing. We also offer in-person meetings under limited circumstances. Do not hesitate to reach out!