Health Care Proxy, Living Will
The purpose of a lasting power of attorney is to make provisions for the event that a person is unable to make their own decisions.
It is granted with the principal being of sound mind and judgment. Through a lasting power of attorney, a person of trust is appointed and authorised to take care of any matter transferred to them in case the principal loses their legal capacity. This is also true in the case of a legal guardian appointed by a court.
We provide assistance in the drafting of a lasting power of attorney and record a public deed in accordance with the parties’ request.
On 1 July 2006, the new Act on Living Wills (Patientenverfügungs-Gesetz) came into force. This acts differentiates between a General and a Binding Living Will (beachtliche und verbindliche Patientenverfügung). Since it does not contain any provisions for the time after the patient’s death, a living will is no testamentary disposition in the proper sense.
Binding Living Will
For the purpose of a binding living will the rejected measures need to be described in detail and the patient needs to be able to correctly assess the effects of the living will.
A binding living will is to be recorded in writing, stating the date of issue, before a Civil law Notary, an attorney-at-law or a legally qualified patient representative. Before that, however, the patient is to be informed in detail about the nature and the effects of the living will. The information provided by the doctors has to be recorded as well.
A living will is valid for a period of five years only and has to be reconfirmed after that period. However, if the patient is only insufficiently able to judge or to speak and thus unable to renew the living will, it remains effective.