What if I do not have an advanced directive?

If someone does not have an advanced directive, Texas law provides for how decisions will be made if the person is incapacitated. If the doctor knows what the person’s wishes are, then the doctor will carry out those instructions. If, however, the doctor does not know what the person’s wishes are, Texas law spells out whom the doctor will consult. In order of priority, the doctor will consult

  • A spouse
  • Reasonably available adult children
  • Parents
  • Nearest living relative
  • Another doctor, if a doctor who is not involved in the person’s care agrees

An advanced directive will override this priority, allowing the signing individual to choose who makes medical decisions when the individual is unable to. Advanced directives become valid only when the person who created it is unable to speak for himself. Advanced directives can also be revoked or changed at any time. They cover only health care decisions; other documents can be created to help with financial decisions.

Hegwood Law Group

Hegwood Law Group