Making your wishes known
Planning ahead is an important way to stay in control of your future, especially when it comes to making health care decisions. Whether you are healthy, growing older or nearing the end of your life, it is wise to make arrangements for end of life care before you are either gravely ill or dying.
Some things to consider are:
have conversations with your family and loved ones about what your wishes are
consider creating a living Will which is a statement expressing your views on how you would or would not like to be treated if you are unable to make those decisions at the time, and plan your end of life care
plan where you are going to store this information so that those who may need it will know where to find it easily
make a legal will
consider who you want to make health care decisions for you when you cant make them yourself
consider what medical treatment you want or don't want.
Age UK (opens in a new window) has some useful information on making a living will and other legal matters about making your wishes known.
The related links section at the end of this page will take you to information on emotional support for either yourself or your family, contact numbers for hospices in this area and information on mental capacity and making arrangements for others to manage your affairs.
Preparing a legal will is one of the most important responsibilities you have. If you die without having a will, your assets may be distributed according to the law rather then your wishes. This could mean that your partner receives less, or that the money goes to family who may not need it.
Be prepared to include information about an executor (the person you name to carry out the terms of your will), your family and children, anyone you wish to disinherit, your assets, tax implications, gifts, trusts, life insurance and charitable contributions. Be sure to review your Will periodically to keep your information up to date.
The Gov.uk (opens in a new window) website gives more detailed information on Wills and planning your finances.
The Citizens Advice Bureau (opens in a new window) also provides useful information about writing your will.
The following document is in Portable Document Format (PDF). You can download software to view PDF documents for free from the Adobe website (opens in a new window)