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Advance decisions (“Living Wills”)

What is an advance decision?

Many of us have clear ideas as to how we would wish to be treated and cared for in the event of future illness or serious injury, for example certain medical treatments or procedures that we would not want to receive. Far fewer of us take active steps to formalise these wishes in writing.

Making an advance decision (previously referred to as a Living Will) enables you to decide how you would like to be treated or cared for if you lose capacity to make those decisions in the future.

An advance decisions can set out:

  • Those circumstances in which you would want to refuse certain specified treatments
  • The person or people that you would want to be consulted if there were any difficulties regarding the advance decision
  • Preferences and wishes in relation to treatments (although a particular treatment cannot be demanded)

Alternatively, if you want to nominate specific people to make decisions on your behalf in relation to medical treatment, and in relation to many other decisions affecting your personal welfare, you could consider putting in place a lasting power of attorney for health and welfare.

We can also provide advice and assistance in relation to any dispute where an individual has made an advance decision. For example, if someone lacks mental capacity to consent to or refuse a particular treatment and the validity of their advance decision is being challenged by a medical practitioner.

Contact a specialist Wills solicitor

For help making an advance decision, call our specialist team now on 0800 652 8025 or contact us online for a free, confidential initial consultation.

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