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What is the Difference Between a Will and a Living Will?

Many times I am asked about the difference between a Will and a Living Will. Although they sound similar, they have two very different functions.

When you are putting together an estate plan, it consists of two parts. There are the documents that speak for you while you are alive, but you can’t speak for yourself due to illness or incapacity and there are documents that speak for you when you pass away. A Living Will falls into the category of documents that speak for you while you are alive and a Will falls into the category of documents that speak for you once you have passed away.

A Living Will contains your thoughts and wishes regarding whether you do or do not want to be kept alive by artificial means if you are at a point, due to accident or illness, where the doctor says there is no longer a hope of recovery for you. It is a chance to give your family guidance as they struggle, in a highly emotional situation, to figure out what you would have wanted them to decide for you.

A Will contains your wishes for how you want what you own to be distributed among your family and friends once you pass away. It can also contain instructions for the care and support of your family members, such as naming a guardian for your minor children. It is a road map of instructions that should be prepared in accordance with the laws of the state in which you reside.

So, since they serve two completely different but equally important functions, it is prudent to have both a Living Will and Will.

  • Why Choose
    Our Firm?

    We limit the number of clients that we have at one time, allowing us to focus on your case.

    Personalized Representation
  • Know the
    Benefits

    Find out if you and your family can benefit from our elder law planning services!

    More Information
  • Dedicated & Experienced

    Our firm exclusively handles elder law concerns so your family can obtain peace of mind.

    Meet Your Attorney
  • Complimentary Consultation

    Let us help. Request your consultation today and we will be in touch.

    Contact Us Now

Contact Us

Edwards Elder Law, P.A.
St. Petersburg Elder Law Attorney
Located at: 2510 1st Ave. N.,
St. Petersburg, FL 33713
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Phone: (727) 755-5808
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