Health Care Directive

Another type of power of attorney. Two common types of health care directives are a Health Care Power of Attorney and a Living Will.

  • A health care power of attorney is a written statement you sign in which you name an adult you trust to make health care decisions for you only when you cannot make or communicate such decisions yourself.
  • A living will is a written statement that tells your doctor a specific list of medical treatments you want and do not want performed on you if you become unable to speak for yourself.

These documents must be notarized and witnessed in a form that complies with the requirements of the law.

Give copies of either your health care power of attorney or your living will to your doctors as soon as you sign them and to any health care facility if you are admitted for treatment. You should also tell your doctor how your agent, with the power of attorney for health care, can be reached. Also, tell your agents where you keep the original document you signed, and give your agents and family members a copy.

These kinds of powers do not expire or end unless you either replace them with a new document, or sign a document called a "revocation" to end the power.

There are forms to help you with this in legal stores and in bookstores. Also available at the SSC.

Source: Superior Court of Arizona, Maricopa County