Realizing that you’ve just been diagnosed with a serious medical condition can be an overwhelming prospect. There are many things to think about when it comes to protecting yourself and your family during this challenging time.

Don’t neglect the opportunity to create important documents that will help enable decision-making if you become unable to manage this for yourself. When you’re feeling healthy, it’s easy to push off difficult decisions about who should make care choices on your behalf if you’re unable to do so. But once you’ve received a serious diagnosis, these issues become top of mind.

While it still might be emotionally hard to discuss options in estate planning with someone who has a recent cancer diagnosis, you can make things easier for them and their loved ones in the future by doing so. An advanced directive is used to appoint a healthcare agent to make decisions on your behalf if you become unable to do so.

Depending on the severity of cancer treatments or the progression of the condition, this situation could arise sooner rather than later. Having a Maryland estate planning lawyer draft this document now means that the right person who understands the options has the chance to exercise their choice in a very difficult situation.

An advanced directive can be used to allow the healthcare agent to decide what kinds of treatment the person should receive or not. You can name a family member or some other person to serve in this role, but it should always be a person who is comfortable with understanding your wishes and exercising them in a time of duress. Not every family member might be comfortable with serving in this role, so you’ll want to make sure they are aware of what’s involved.

Know that you need help writing your Maryland advanced directive? An attorney can help you feel more comfortable about what’s included and the validity of the document. Schedule a meeting today with a Maryland estate planning attorney.