The Best Sources for Arizona Living Will and Medical Power of Attorney Forms
If you've decided it's time to prepare documents directing your health care, congratulations. It may be challenging to think about the kinds of medical treatment you do or do not want at the end of life, but your completed forms are almost guaranteed to bring peace of mind to you and your loved ones.
To get started, you'll need the right forms to fill out. In Arizona, this means obtaining forms for a Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney.
Which Health Care Forms Are Best?
You have several options for choosing forms in Arizona. You can use the Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney forms published by the state, but you are not required to do so. Similar forms are valid as long as they meet state law requirements, including signing and witnessing or notarization rules. (See Arizona Revised Statutes §§ 36-3224 and 36-3262.)
If you want to quickly prepare basic, legally valid health care forms, you can find a link to free copies of Arizona's Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney below. Many people prefer, however, to have additional guidance to help them complete their forms.
Following is a brief overview of what Arizona's Advance Directive form covers, as well as options for getting additional help, if you need or want it.
About Arizona's Health Care Forms
The Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney forms published by Arizona allow you to do the following.
Specify your health care wishes. The Living Will form allows you to statewhether you do or do not wish to receive life-sustaining treatment if you are diagnosed with a terminal condition, or in a persistent vegitative state or irreversible coma. It provides a range of choices and invites you to attach additional instructions of your own to the document.
Name your health care agent. The Health Care Power of Attorney allows you to name your health care agent -- also called a "health care representative" or "surrogate" in Arizona -- who will speak for you if you become too ill to speak for yourself. You can name a first choice and an alternate, and provide guidelines to help your agent make decisions for you. For example, you may state whether or not you want your health care proxy to make decisions about providing you with food and water through a tube or IV.
The Health Care Power of Attorney also contains sections where you can express your wishes about organ donation, autopsy, and the burial or cremation of your body. You can give your health care agent the power to oversee some or all of these matters, if you wish.
In your Health Care Power of Attorney, you can also indicate whether you have prepared a living will or other forms documenting your health care wishes.
What the forms don't cover. Arizona's health care forms are very thorough, covering most essential issues. They do not include sections that:
- name a primary physician to oversee your care, or
- electing your health care agent to serve as your court-appointed guardian to handle all matters related to your personal comfort and care, should that become necessary.
If you want your documents to cover these issues, you would have to write them in or attach them.
Making Arizona Health Care Forms with Quicken WillMaker
We're going to be upfront here. The authors of this website, Albin Renauer, J.D., and Shae Irving, J.D., have extensive experience creating tools to help people make their own valid legal forms, and they have spent a couple of decades researching and studying the health care directive laws for the fifty states. Each is a lawyer and contributor to the Quicken WillMaker estate planning software program, available from Nolo.com.
The Arizona Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney you make with Quicken WillMaker meet all state law requirements and allow you to spell out your wishes for health care in as little or as much detail as you choose. The program walks you step by step through the process of making your documents, explaining each choice along the way. When you're done, you simply print your completed documents and follow the enclosed instructions about how to sign them, have them witnessed or notarized, and get them into the hands of those who may need to know your wishes in the future.
Quicken WillMaker's Arizona forms cover all the issues discussed above. If you're ready to get started, you can download Quicken WillMaker and make your forms today.
Where to Get a Free Copies of Arizona's Health Care Forms
If do-it-yourself software doesn't appeal to you, or if you simply want to see what Arizona's Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney look like, you can download free copies from the Arizona Attorney General's Office. While you're there, you can watch the Attorney General's helpful video explaining the importance of creating these documents directing your health care.
When to Get a Lawyer's Help
Health care forms are specially designed so you can complete them on your own, or with input as needed from your doctor or other health care advisers. That said, if you feel more comfortable enlisting a lawyer to make or review your documents, you should seek help from a qualified estate planning attorney.
For more information about hiring a lawyer to make your documents, including situations when a lawyer's help may be useful, see Do I Need a Lawyer to Make a Living Will?