Switch to ADA Accessible Theme
Close Menu

Key Sections Of A Florida Designation Of Health Care Surrogate Form


When you think about the concept of civil rights, your mind probably turns to freedom of speech, protection from discrimination, and other basic constitutional principles. You probably do not expect these issues to touch upon estate planning, but Florida lawmakers take a different view: The Florida statute on Health Care Advance Directives actually falls under the Title on Civil Rights, with a specific statement that the fundamental right of self-determination includes the right to plan for incapacity. As long as you are competent when you execute a Designation of Health Care Surrogate, you can appoint an agent to handle medical care and address other important topics.

However, to achieve your goals and take full advantage of the benefits, it is essential that you pay close attention to the important sections of this document. Your Dade City advance directives attorney can explain each in more detail and assist with preparation, but you should note how four key components work. 

  1. Appointing a Surrogate: The first decision you make when executing an advance directive is deciding on the person you appoint as your health care surrogate, which is the individual who legally steps into your shoes if you become incapacitated. He or she can make decisions regarding medical care and take other actions as you direct in other sections of the document. You should also consider appointing an alternate health care surrogate in case your first choice is unable or unwilling to act. 
  1. Instructions for Medical Care: In this section, you will go into detail regarding what you authorize your health care surrogate to do, such as:
  • Receive medical records and other health-related information;
  • Make decisions regarding medical care, including providing informed consent to procedures;
  • Apply for benefits to help with health care costs; and
  • Donate anatomical gifts. 
  1. Addition of Specific Instructions: If the advance directive does not already cover some of your specific wishes and intentions regarding medical care, you can include additional details. You should discuss instructions with your attorney, since there may be some interaction with your living will – if you already have one or may execute such a document contemporaneously with your advance directive. 
  1. Effective Date of Surrogate’s Authority: Your advance directive will be in force as of the date you sign it; however, you will probably want your health care agent’s authority to take effect at a later date: When your primary care physician determines that you are incapacitated and cannot make decisions on your own. Until that time, you can revoke or amend any section of the Designation of Health Care Surrogate as provided in the document. 

A Florida Advance Directives Lawyer Can Explain the Details 

This overview should help you understand the basics on the important sections of a Designation of Health Care Surrogate. For a more in-depth description of advance directives, please contact The Law Office of Laurie R. Chane to set up a consultation with a member of our team. You can reach our Pasco County location by calling 352-567-0055 or visiting us online.

Facebook Twitter LinkedIn