Health care law addresses the legal issues and regulations that govern ongoing care, as well as hospital and health care administration.

An understanding of health insurance is key, because there are significant differences in the types and amount of coverage provided by various private insurance policies, such as HMOs, PPOs, disability insurance, and hospital indemnity insurance.

So it’s wise to seek out legal advice to make sure you are addressing all the health care issues that best serve your needs. Here are three of the biggest issues that might demand legal counsel.

1. Affordable Care Act

The Affordable Care Act seeks to put consumers back in charge of their health care. Under the law, a new “Patient’s Bill of Rights” gives the American people the stability and flexibility they need to make informed choices about their health.

A health lawyer can assist you in understanding the new benefits, such as the end of pre-existing conditions, insuring your children up to the age of 26, what to do if an insurance company tries to cancel your policy, and a myriad of other issues this new law governs of concern to you and your family.

2. Medical power of attorney

Medical Power of Attorney‘ is a document signed by a competent adult — i.e., “principal” — designating a person to make health care decisions on your behalf should you be unable to make such decisions.

The individual chosen to act on the principal’s behalf is referred to as an “agent.” Attorneys can guide you through the legalese involved in this process and insure you are covering your bases and there are no surprises if and when you are unable to make your own health care decisions.

3. Living will

A Living Will is a document that allows a person to delineate for health care providers what needs to be done in certain health care situations. These instructions can offer a general overview guideline for the physicians or they may provide a specific road map with step-by-step requirements.

Important health care decisions such as the ability or inability to be moved to a nursing home or a community-based residential facility are among the items that should be included in a Health Care Power of Attorney document. Other instructions may be included with regard to the provision of nutrition and hydration and the withholding of such medical assistance.

The current Health Care Power of Attorney documents incorporate the general parameters of a Living Will. This important document is absolutely essential in today’s society, for it can help you avoid future costs relating to the onerous guardianship process. Consulting with a health care attorney can assist in making sure you cross any hurdles and avoid some of the traditional pitfalls involved in setting up a living will.

Many people assume they can handle most of these health care issues on their own, and that seeking out a health care lawyer is too costly. However, this is often not the case. It just takes a little homework to conduct some comparison shopping and determine which attorney might work best for you.

For more information regarding attorneys, health care laws, policies, and other related news, FentonNelson.com provides up-to-date data, attorney rosters, and current health-related feature articles.

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