If you are planning your estate, you should not forget to think about the possibility of your incapacitation. After all, a serious illness or catastrophic injury may render you unable to make critical decisions about the medical care you need.
By naming a health care agent, you have someone who can make important decisions on your behalf. Naturally, because medical procedures and end-of-life care can be sensitive topics, you want to choose a health care agent who is likely to do what you would do.
Can your spouse do the job?
As the Texas Medical Association notes, state law places few restrictions on who may serve as health care agents. Therefore, you are mostly free to pick anyone you want. Because of the nature of marriage, many Texans ask their spouse to do the job. Still, if you think your spouse is not likely to respect your wishes, you may want to pick someone else.
Does the person understand your wishes?
Before choosing your health care agent, you should write down your moral, religious, financial and medical beliefs. By designating someone who understands and agrees with these values, you increase the chances your agent will respect your wishes.
Is your agent available?
Doctors may only have a limited time to treat or resuscitate you, so they need to be able to reach your health care agent quickly. Consequently, you should consider availability when designating your agent. You may also want to choose a backup agent who can make medical decisions for you when your primary agent is unavailable.
Ultimately, by taking the destination of your health care agent as seriously as possible, you can find the right person or persons for the job.