In this video, you will get answers to these questions:

  • If you are in an accident how do people get your healthcare directive?
  • What is a healthcare directive?
  • What are the steps you can take for family and friends to have access to your healthcare directive?

Video Transcript

If you’re in an accident, how do people get your healthcare directive? That’s the question I’m answering today. I’m Aaron Hall, an attorney in Minneapolis, Minnesota. All right a healthcare directive. Let’s talk about what that is. First, you might know this as a living will. Basically, it’s a document that says, look, if I lose the capacity to make decisions for myself, I would like my wishes, my will honored in the medical decisions that are being made by doctors. It’s a way to give direction to health and medical professionals who are dealing with you when you no longer have the capacity. Maybe you’re in a car accident, maybe you have Alzheimer’s, maybe you have had a stroke, but that’s when a healthcare directive comes in play.

Now, the question is how do the people who need that healthcare directive gets it in the case of an accident? Well step one, you should make sure that your healthcare directive, once it’s properly filled out, is filed with your regular healthcare providers. That’s step number one. Step two is you can make sure that your loved ones know where it is, should they need to go find it. Maybe it’s in a fireproof safe in your house. Maybe it’s in a folder in your credenza, but make sure that your loved ones know where your healthcare directive is, so if something happens to you, they can go get it and give it to the physicians or healthcare professionals who are treating you.

Finally, there are some services out there that will allow you to have your healthcare directive online with a secure URL link from a card in your wallet. DocuBank, for example, comes to mind. DocuBank provides a card that’s in your wallet, and so if you’re on a car accident, law enforcement or emergency responders can go through your personal belongings. They can see this card and give it to medical personnel who then are entitled to go online download in a secure manner by providing their credentials, downloading a secure copy of your healthcare directive.

A healthcare directive often gives guidance to the medical professionals, but it may also designate a person to make decisions for you. Perhaps a spouse, friend, child, sibling. So for example, in my case, my healthcare directive says my wife can make decisions if I’m not available, and it can even name, usually it can name some backups. So if my wife was also in the accident, who gets to then make the decisions?

If you’re interested in additional information about healthcare directives or other topics of this nature, you can see the link in the description below that goes to If you have questions, feel free to add them in the comments section and don’t forget that this is based on Minnesota law. Every state has their own law and there’s an important disclaimer linked in the description below. Essentially, I give this general educational information to help educate people, but not as a substitute for legal advice. That’s where if you have an issue, you should talk with an attorney equipped and capable to handle this sort of issue. If you find these educational videos helpful, you’re welcome to subscribe here in this channel. Again, I’m Aaron Hall. Thanks for joining me here today.