A Silver Lining in the Schiavo Storyhttp://www.fool.com/personal-finance/retirement/2005/03/23/a-silver-lining-in-the-schiavo-story.aspx Dayana Yochim
March 23, 2005
If the tragic story of Terri Schiavo has any silver lining, it's that her plight may prevent other families from enduring a similarly prolonged moral, legal, and emotional agony.
Since 1990, the Florida woman has been kept alive -- in a persistent vegetative state -- since suffering from severe brain damage caused by heart failure. Her husband, Michael, has said she would not have wanted to be kept alive by artificial means, but her parents dispute that.
Whatever your views on right-to-die legislation and the legal action swirling around Terri's fate, the Schiavo story sets the groundwork for having that difficult discussion with your loved ones -- the discussion about your wishes, should you be incapable of expressing them on your own.
But a conversation is not enough. Verbal contracts are not binding if other parties are involved. and that's why you need a few important documents.
Living will (advance medical directive)