You’re driving home from work, excited to start the weekend! When suddenly, a truck heading in the other direction veers into your lane. You have traffic to your right and a concrete barricade to your left, there’s nowhere to go…
Have you ever thought about the what ifs? What if the “it’ll never happen to me” did happen to you? If you lost capacity due to injury, illness or old age – who would be there to make those crucial decisions about your healthcare and lifestyle?
It’s possible you didn’t know that you can appoint an Enduring Guardian. You can appoint a family member or close friend to make some very crucial decisions for you – what treatment you receive for your injuries or illness, for instance.
So, what if you haven’t appointed an enduring guardian and tragedy strikes?
Unfortunately, the process is long and can be quite emotional for your loved ones if no one is appointed as your guardian. They will need to apply to the Guardianship Tribunal to be appointed as your guardian, or the Public Guardian may be appointed as your guardian, if the Guardianship Tribunal decides no one else is suitable. By planning ahead and getting this document organised today, it’ll save a lot of heartache for your loved ones.
My partner or children will look after me! I don’t need to worry about this…
Sad to say, it doesn’t often pan out this way. We had a client, David, who was in a de facto relationship for 33 years with Fiona when tragedy struck. Fiona fell ill with a brain tumour, and because they were not legally married and he was not appointed as her guardian, the hospital staff refused to speak to David. Can you even imagine?
Another example; Julie has 3 children but none have been appointed as her guardian. When Julie fell ill at the age of 84 the hospital staff refused to speak to just one of the children, they all had to be present at the same time. They all have families, jobs and one even lives interstate! But, they all had to be at the same place at the same time to speak to the doctor about their mother’s care.
All of this could have been avoided if both Julie and Fiona made the call to appoint an Enduring Guardian while they were still healthy and capable.