Can you make changes to your health care proxy?

Can you make changes to your health care proxy?

On Behalf of | May 21, 2024 | Estate Planning

After filling out and signing your health care proxy, you may change your mind about its provisions or your chosen health care agent. Luckily, making changes to this form is easy. However, you need to be informed to avoid costly mistakes.

Here is what to know about making changes to your health care proxy:

Fill out a new form

If you want to change any information on your health care proxy, all you need to do is fill out a new form. Doing this will revoke the existing health care proxy, but you can also destroy it to avoid confusion.

State the circumstances for its expiration

You may indicate on your healthcare proxy a specific date or conditions upon which it expires. Otherwise, it will be valid indefinitely. When the expressed date comes or a specified event occurs, your health care proxy will be invalid. 

It can be revoked automatically 

According to the New York Health Care Proxy Law, if you choose your spouse to be your health care agent and go through a divorce or legal separation, their appointment will be automatically canceled unless you include a note on your existing form and date it stating you want them to retain their position. Or you can complete a new form and name your former spouse as your health care agent.

Who to inform about the changes you make?

If you update your health care proxy, it may be wise to inform your health care agent, health care team and family members. This way, it can be easier for them to spot an outdated form.

Making changes to your health care proxy is not as complicated as you may believe. Consider seeking legal guidance to validate your changes.