A Living Will is a document in which you can record your wishes for medical care or treatment that you may receive in the future. This means that your loved ones and medical staff will know what choices you have made even if you are no longer able to communicate your wishes.
How Does a Living Will Work?
A Living Will works by recording what medical treatment you would choose to receive, or choose not to receive, if the situation arises in the future where these treatments may be appropriate. For example, you can set out situations in which you would not like to be resuscitated, or where you would choose not to be kept alive on life support. And you can specify situations in which you would choose for these treatments to be carried out.
A Living Will can't be used for the purpose of euthanasia, which is illegal in the UK, but it can be used to help medical practitioners and your loved ones when they need to make difficult choices. It's important to also discuss the contents of your Living Will with your doctor, so that your intentions can also be recorded in your medical records.
Many people choose to make a Living Will as part of their preparations for the future, but this decision could be triggered by a specific event, such as being diagnosed with an illness. By making a Living Will, you can be certain that your wishes have been clearly communicated to the relevant individuals.
How to Make a Living Will
It's quick and easy to make a Living Will with Co-op Legal Services. You can make your Living Will over the telephone with one of our specialist Will Writers at a time that suits you. Our lines are open from 9am to 8pm Monday to Friday and 9am to 1pm on Saturdays.
If you're still undecided as to whether a Living Will is the right option for you, we can provide you with free initial advice and guidance on making a Living Will. We will break everything down with no legal jargon, so that you fully understand the process and the applications of your Living Will.
If you are also making a Will or updating your existing Will, then you can put your Living Will in place at the same time. Alternatively, you can make an appointment to just discuss your Living Will on its own – it's entirely up to you.
What's more, we offer transparent, fixed fee pricing for our Will services. We will provide you with a fixed quote for your Living Will before you decide whether to take out the service. Once we have provided you with a price, that price will not change.
What's the Difference between a Will and a Living Will?
A Living Will deals solely with matters directly related to your medical care during your lifetime. A Will, on the other hand, sets out what should happen to everything you own after you die.
Making a Living Will does not eliminate the need to make a separate Will to deal with your Estate. If you die with a Living Will in place, but you have not made a separate Will setting out how your Estate should be dealt with, then your Estate will be distributed in line with inheritance laws called the Rules of Intestacy. For this reason, it's important to also make a Will to address this.