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Is a living will right for your estate plan?

Many people shy away from creating a living will because they don't know exactly what it can do for them. Here's why: The name can be a bit misleading.

In all actuality, a living will is not the same as a traditional will. Instead, it is a legal document that contains your treatment instructions and medical care directives. This way, if you are unable to communicate your decisions, you can still be assured of receiving the right type of treatment.

There are many benefits of creating a living will, with peace of mind at the top of the list. With this in place, you don't have to worry about receiving the wrong treatment if you are incapacitated.

Another benefit is that you don't have to put your family in a bad position, such as forcing your spouse or adult child to make difficult decisions regarding your end-of-life care. This can go a long way in protecting these people against emotional harm.

You don't have to add a living will to your estate plan, but doing so is something that will benefit you and your loved ones. It can be difficult to think about what you want to happen if you become seriously injured or extremely ill, but it's better to be safe than sorry.

Once you understand all the benefits of a living will, as well as how you can make this part of your estate plan, you can decide if you should do so in the near future. Many people realize that it's the perfect addition to their current estate plan.

Source: FindLaw, "Living Will Basics," accessed Nov. 21, 2017

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