Tennessee Advance Directive Form


A Tennessee advance directive is a form that enables an agent to inform the principal’s physician of their medical wishes or make their treatment decisions for them. The document only becomes valid if a physician confirms that the principal cannot speak for themselves, a mental state known as “incapacitation”. The principal can select their preferences for after-life care. For example, they can instruct the agent to handle their burial arrangements, funeral services, and/or organ donation. If the principal has not completed these sections, the agent must choose for them.

The principal must write the form before becoming mentally or physically disabled. If they do not have an advance directive in place before that time, the principal’s family member or friend must set up a court date to appoint a conservator. The judge chooses a conservator who they feel would best represent the principal’s wishes when making their medical decisions.

If the principal does not fill out the second section, the agent will be permitted to make the principal’s medical decisions for them. For example, the agent must choose whether or not the principal endures life-sustaining treatment if they are comatose, at the end of their life, or unable to function independently. They must also decide if the principal receives:

  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR);
  • Life support;
  • Surgery;
  • Medication;
  • Blood transfusions;
  • Tube feeding; and/or
  • Intravenous (IV) fluids.