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Living Well

Definition of "Living well"

Legal document that permits the individual to declare his or her desires concerning the use of life-sustaining treatment to be made at the point in time when death is imminent and the individual no longer has control of his or her faculties. This type of will has the advantages of ensuring that the individual's wishes are followed to the conclusion and that a family member does not have the burden of making extremely agonizing decisions on behalf of the individual. It is the requirement of most state statutes that such a will be signed, dated, and witnessed (excluding anyone who has an interest in the estate of the individual affirming the will). Also required by most state statutes is that the will include both a statement of capacity and a statement of intent by the individual. The following states have statutes addressing the living will issue: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, as well as Washington, D.C.

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