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The Difference Between Wills and Living Wills in Tampa
July 20, 2021

In these two situations, it matters deeply to us as people that our wishes are followed. However, we are not able to enforce them. In the first case, you may be injured or ill to the point of unconsciousness or incoherence. In the second, your life might have to come to an end and your property is up for distribution.

Wills and living wills in Tampa are legal documents that help with asserting your desires in either situation. Our experts at Candela Law Firm, PA will walk you through the differences between them.

Understanding wills

A last will and testament outlines your wishes for how your property should be distributed after your passing. The will focuses on the beneficiaries of your assets. It may also determine who cares for your children.

In the absence of a will, the Florida state officials decide what happens to your property. Usually, this means giving it to blood and adopted relatives.

In some circumstances, the state government may take possession of the property. The exact decisions depend on the case and reasonable interpretations of Chapter 732 of the Florida intestacy laws.

Understanding living wills

A living will gives directions for your treatment if you become medically incapacitated. You can specify the types of treatments you are open to receiving and those you are not. For example, you may be okay with a feeding tube but not with life support.

A living will also provides instructions for what to do if you develop an end-stage condition such as Alzheimer’s. And it says whether to prolong your life in certain situations or how to approach ending your life when there’s a legal provision for doing so.

The differences between wills and living wills in Tampa

When they come into effect

A living will is active while you’re alive. Meanwhile, a will only comes into effect at the point you pass away. That’s because a living will is only valid while there’s a possibility of you needing treatment. And a will’s purpose is to direct the apportionment of your assets when you’re no longer there to do so.

Some events that can trigger a living will to activate include debilitating disease, involvement in an accident, or extreme loss of sound reasoning.

Their focus

Your will is more about what happens to your beneficiaries than affairs directly affecting you. That can be your children, relatives, friends, and organizations. But a living will concerns you specifically and sometimes solely you. While the focus of a will is on your heirs, a living will is centered on your medical treatment declarations.

Their limitations

While you may have a living wll, paramedics will do all they can to save you in an accident situation. The reason is that a living will falls short of a DNR or Do Not Resuscitate order, which you may get with help from your doctor.

Similarly, a will has limitations in that it’s contestable during probate. If you have an experienced and skilled legal attorney, your wishes are far more protected.

Get a will and a living will that preserve and defend your legacy

Estate planning is one of our practice areas at Candela Law Firm, PA. We’re motivated to ensure our clients’ wishes are upheld, both while they’re alive and afterward. With help from us, you can protect your family at the most reasonable price in Tampa.

Schedule a consultation with us today and make sure your desires are rightfully respected.

Signing wills and living wills in Tampa.
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