In Massachusetts, your health care directive includes two documents. In your Document Directing Health Care (also known as a living will), you can document your health care wishes. And in your Health Care Proxy, you can name a health care agent to make health care decisions on your behalf. After you create your documents, you and two witnesses must sign them. Neither of your witnesses may be under the age of 18 or your health care agent.
After you and your witnesses sign your documents, they are legally valid. Keep the originals in your files and give a copy to your health care agent, if you named one. To ensure that you get the health care that you want, it’s a good idea to make your wishes widely known. So, you might also consider giving copies of your documents to your physician, your hospital, your HMO or other insurance plan, and trusted family members and friends.
Review your documents every few years to make sure that they still reflect your wishes. Also, consider making new documents if you move to another state, get married or divorced, or if your health care agent is no longer able to supervise your wishes.
Your properly finalized documents will stay in effect until you revoke them, if you ever choose to do so. You can revoke your document directing health care or your health care proxy at any time. The best way to revoke them is to do it in writing. If possible, also collect and tear up all copies that you may have distributed to others. Finally, tell everyone who knows about your documents that you have revoked them.
Learn more about Living Wills and Medical Powers of Attorney.
Learn more about Massachusetts Living Wills and Health Care Proxies.
When you make a document directing health care and or a health care proxy with Quicken WillMaker Plus, they will conform to all of Massachusetts laws about living wills and health care powers of attorney. And it will print with plain English instructions that detail how to make them legal.