The various areas of law often intersect in ways you wouldn’t imagine. Visualize this scenario, you filed for divorce from your spouse of seven years. While the case is still pending you are admitted to the hospital for surgery. Now imagine something goes wrong during surgery and the hospital contacts your spouse, who is not yet your ex-spouse, to ask how they should proceed or to approve a possibly risky surgical procedure. Would you want your ex-husband or wife making medically decisions on your behalf? This may sound like a nightmare ripped from the daytime television shows, but this exact situation has crossed my desk.

No one should ever step foot into a hospital or plan a surgical procedure without first seeking out an experienced probate attorney to assist in drafting a patient advocate designation. Not all trips to the hospital are planned, meaning the longer you wait the great the risk you will be unprepared or even unable to choose who should make dire medical decisions on your behalf. Those who are thinking about filing, have just filed, or just completed a divorce need to plan ahead and make sure they designate the right person to make medical decisions for them.

Andrew Babnik Jr of Kelly & Kelly P.C., has extensive experience in the areas of Family Law and Estate Planning and stands at the ready to help you avoid the wrong person making decisions for you.