living wills

A so-called “Living Will” is not a Last Will & Testament. It is a letter of instruction to your physician. It is a statement of your instructions regarding health care treatment decisions during terminal illness, including the right to direct the withholding or withdrawing of life-sustaining procedures. Kansas recognizes such advance directives in K.S.A. 65-28,101 through 109.

A “life-sustaining procedure” is any medical procedure which serves only to prolong the dying process and where, in the judgment of the attending physician, death will occur whether or not such procedure or intervention is utilized. This would not include the administration of medication or any procedure to provide comfort or to alleviate pain.

K.S.A. 65-28, 103(c) provides that the declaration be substantially in the form provided in the statute, but also indicates that other specific directions may be included.

Since the use of such a directive is unique for each individual, it is important you have a frank discussion of your wishes with your estate-planning attorney.