Living Will

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DEFINITION of 'Living Will'

A legal document that sets out the medical care an individual, or the principal, wants or does not want in the event that he or she becomes incapable of communicating his or her wishes.

BREAKING DOWN 'Living Will'

A living will is used by people whose wishes will be met should they reach a point when they are no longer able to make the decisions for themselves. For example, if a person sustained life-threatening injuries, or was incapacitated as a result of some terminal illness, the decisions about his or her health care will be his/hers as long as there is a living will. Without one, the decision becomes the responsibility of spouses, family members or other third parties.

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RELATED FAQS
  1. What documents should I have ready in case my partner or I should die?

    Estate planning is one of those topics that most people avoid dealing with until they're forced to. Because of this, many ... Read Full Answer >>
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    You cannot put your IRA in a trust while you are living. You can, however, name a trust as the beneficiary of your IRA and ... Read Full Answer >>
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    Once a revocable trust is created, a trust maker transfers funds or property into the trust by including them in a list with ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What is the difference between a revocable trust and a living trust?

    A revocable trust and living trust are separate terms that describe the same thing: a trust in which the terms can be changed ... Read Full Answer >>
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