The ABA Commission on Law and Aging has just released a new free tool, The Advance Directives: Counseling Guide for Lawyers.  The tool helps lawyers provide more effective health care advance directives for their clients. It provides a counseling checklist for lawyers and eight practice principles to guide clients through the advance care planning process, plus and extensive resource list of tools to help clients sort through their personal values, goals, and wishes regarding future health care decisions. Research on advance care planning shows that people talk to their lawyers as much or more often than to their doctors about advance directives. However, the two professions see the planning process through different lenses. The guide provides guidance that allows lawyers to craft advance health care directives that better align with the clinical realities and family situations clients will face. The Guide was developed through a convening of legal and medical experts and a project team consisting of the ABA Commission along with the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine and partners from the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine and the UC/Hasting Consortium on Law, Science and Health Policy. The John A. Hartford Foundation and the Borchard Foundation Center on Law and Aging provided funding for the project.

The Guide is available for download here.

Source/more: American Bar Association Commission on Law and Aging