An Indiana Living Will is a legal document that allows the final wishes of an individual in their last days to be respected. In a living will, a person, referred to as a Principal or Declarant, will write exactly which treatments they will consent to and which ones they will not consent to during their end-of-life transition. These wishes may include refusing CPR, or consenting to feeding and hydration tubes until the time of death. In Indiana, all living will documents must conform to Title 16, Chapter 36 of the Indiana Code, which states that all Testators must be of sound mind and all living will documents must be voluntary, and all living will documents must be dated, signed in the presence of two (2) witnesses and sent to the attending physician. If a physician is unwilling to comply with the requests of a living will, he or she must transfer the Principal to the care of another complying physician unless he or she questions the validity of the living will or cannot validate the declaration via the Principal.
To complete an Indiana Living will, the first thing that a Principal must do is provide his or her full name, address, gender, and telephone number. Next, the Principal will provide the information of the Advocate that he or he is appointing by listing his or her name, address, and phone number. Once the Principal and Advocate have been named, the Principal will now detail which procedures and treatments he or she will consent and refuse consent to. This section can be lengthy, as there are a variety of treatments, testing, and procedures that may be administered to prolong life. Once this information is complete, the Principal will sign the document in the presence of two witnesses and have the document sent to their physician so that these directives may be made a part of their medical records.