What Health Care Directives Are Called in Your State

Learn what living wills and health care powers of attorney are called in your state.

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Living wills, health care powers of attorney, and advance directives go by different names in different states.  Below, you’ll find a chart that describes how your state handles these documents. 

Terminology

Living Will: The document that describes your health care wishes.

Power of Attorney for Health Care: The document in which you name someone to make healthcare decisions for you.

Advance Directive: A combined living will and power of attorney for health care.

Number of Documents:  If your state combines the living will and power of attorney into one document (usually called an advanced directive), the number of documents is “1” and the chart lists the name of that document. Otherwise, the chart shows one name for the living will and another for the power of attorney or another combination of names. 

Use the linked state names to learn more about the laws in your state. 

Learn more about Living Wills and Powers of Attorney for Health Care, and Advanced Directives on Nolo.com.

What Health Care Directives Are Called in Your State

State

Number of Documents

Living Will

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

Alabama

1

Advance Directive for Health Care

Alaska

1

Advance Health Care Directive

Arizona

2

Living Will

Health Care Power of Attorney

Arkansas

2

Living Will

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

California

1

Advance Health Care Directive

Colorado

2

Declaration as to Medical or Surgical Treatment

Medical Durable Power of Attorney

Connecticut

1 or 2

Document Concerning Health Care and With­holding or Withdrawal of Life Support Systems

Appointment of Health Care Representative

If you name a health care agent and leave health care instructions, your wishes will be combined into a single form called Health Care Instructions and Appointment of Health Care Representative.

Delaware

1

Advance Health Care Directive

District of Columbia

2

Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

Florida

2

Living Will

Designation of Health Care Surrogate

Georgia

1

Advance Directive for Health Care

Hawaii

1

Advance Health Care Directive

Idaho

1

Living Will and Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

Illinois

1 or 2

Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

If you name a health care agent and leave health care instructions, your wishes will be combined into a single Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care form.

Indiana

2

Living Will Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care and Appointment of Health Care Representative

Iowa

2

Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

Kansas

2

Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care Decisions

Kentucky

1

Advance Directive

Maine

1

Advance Health Care Directive

Maryland

1

Advance Directive

Massachusetts

2

Document Directing Health Care

Health Care Proxy

Michigan

2

Document Directing Health Care

Patient Advocate Designation

Minnesota

1

Health Care Directive

Mississippi

1

Advance Health Care Directive

Missouri

2

Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

Montana

2

Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

Nebraska

2

Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

Nevada

2

Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care Decisions

New Hampshire

1

Advance Directive

New Jersey

1 or 2

Instruction Directive

Proxy Directive

If you name a health care agent and leave health care instructions, your wishes will be combined into a single form called a Combined Advance Directive for Health Care.

New Mexico

1

Advance Health Care Directive

New York

2

Document Directing Health Care

Health Care Proxy

North Carolina

2

Advance Directive

Health Care Power of Attorney

North Dakota

1

Health Care Directive

Ohio

2

Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

Oklahoma

1

Advance Directive for Health Care

Oregon

1

Advance Directive

Pennsylvania

2

Living Will

Health Care Power of Attorney

Rhode Island

2

Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

South Carolina

1 or 2

Declaration

Health Care Power of Attorney

If you name a health care agent and leave health care instructions, your wishes will be combined into a single Health Care Power of Attorney form.

South Dakota

2

Living Will Declaration

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

Tennessee

1

Advance Health Care Directive

Texas

2

Directive to Physicians and Family or Surrogates

Medical Power of Attorney

Utah

1

Advance Health Care Directive

Vermont

1

Advance Directive

Virginia

1

Advance Medical Directive

Washington

2

Health Care Directive

Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care

West Virginia

2

Living Will

Medical Power of Attorney

Wisconsin

2

Declaration to Physicians

Power of Attorney for Health Care

Wyoming

1

Advance Health Care Directive

 

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