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What advance health directives are available in Florida?

Solid estate planning includes more than just a well written will. It should also include advanced health care directive documents that express the testator’s wishes regarding specific health care procedures including when to give or hold back medical treatment. But not all advanced health directives are recognized by every state. So what specific advanced health care directives are recognized by the state of Florida?

One advanced health directive that Florida does recognize is a living will. A living will specifically states the kind of medical care a person wants should they become incapacitated and unable to express their wishes. The document is called a living will because it remains in effect as long as the testator is alive. It can include very specific treatment guidelines for different illnesses and conditions.

Another advanced health directive that can be used in Florida is a Health Care Surrogate Designation. This document lets another person, such as a spouse or a trusted friend, make all necessary health care decisions for the testator if he or she becomes incapacitated. This document can also choose an alternate individual to act on the testator’s behalf if necessary.

Florida also recognizes an anatomical donation document. This is a form that states the testator’s desires to donate all or part of their body to someone in need or for medical research. These choices can also be indicated on a Florida driver’s license or a living will.

Advanced health care directives are one way to ensure that a testator’s final wishes are carried out. Any Florida resident who is considering developing an estate plan may want to speak with an estate planning attorney in order to find our more information about these advanced health care directives that are available in the state.

Source:, “Health care advance directives,” Accessed Oct. 12, 2015

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