Virginia Advance Directives
When you think of legal documents, it’s likely that you think about keeping them filed away somewhere safe, like a locked firebox or desk drawer.
But ADs are different. We don’t want them locked away.
We want to share these because they serve us best when they are available during crises.
We need many individuals to have copies of the AD.
Your doctors and agent cannot follow your AD if they don’t know where it is. They need to be able to find it quickly and easily. Please make copies of your AD and share these copies with people you trust.
Some people you might want to share your AD with:
Please keep track of the people to whom you give copies. Why is this important? Because if you want to change or cancel your AD sometime in the future, you will need to let everyone who has a copy know about these changes. To help you keep track of who you have given your Advance Directive to, you can use “My Advance Directive Tracking Sheet.”
Another way that you can make your Advance Directive available to others is by using one of the Advance Directive Registries. To learn more about the AD Registries, please click here.
For another resource to help you think through good next steps to take once you have completed your Advance Directive, please see the Next Steps Worksheet. For a type-in version of this resource, please click here.
This website is not intended to provide legal advice. It is merely a guide, and reflects one view of Advance Directives in Virginia. It can be beneficial to consult with an attorney regarding your Advance Directive. However, the intention of Virginia’s law on Advance Directives is to enable and encourage all capable adults to fill out an Advance Directive on their own.
This website is designed and administered by Mental Health America of Virginia (MHAV) and is funded through a grant by the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services.
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