Vermont Medical (Health Care) Power of Attorney Form
State laws (18 V.S.A. § 9701) regarding Vermont Medical (Health Care) Power of Attorney forms define these legal agreements as written records created by a capable individual “which may include appointment of an agent, identification of a preferred primary care clinician, instructions on health care desires or treatment goals, an anatomical gift, disposition of remains, and funeral goods and services. ” A capable individual is defined by this same state law as someone who possesses:
- A basic understanding of the implications of having another individual (their Agent) make health care decisions on their behalf,
- The ability to appoint an appropriate individual to make such decisions, and
- The ability to identify whom they want to make health care decisions for themselves.
State Laws & Signing Requirements
Signing Requirements (18 V.S.A. § 9703) – State law mandates that in order for an Medical (Health Care) Power of Attorney / Advance Directive to be lawfully executed it must be:
- Dated, executed, and signed by the Principal (or, if the Principal cannot physically do so themselves they may direct another individual to sign for them in their presence),
- Completed in the presence of two (2) or more witnesses who must sign and affirm the Principal met the requirements set out in 18 V.S.A. § 9703.
In addition to signing requirements, additional requirements exist if the Principal is being admitted to or is a resident of a nursing home or residential facility at the time the Advance Directive is executed. In such cases, it is mandatory that one of the individuals listed in 18 V.S.A. § 9703(d) “explains the nature and effect of an advance directive to the principal and signs a statement affirming that he or she has provided the explanation.” The individual may be one of the following parties:
- An ombudsman
- A recognized member of the clergy,
- an attorney licensed to practice in this State,
- A Probate Division of the Superior Court designee,
- An individual designated by a hospital pursuant to subsection 9709(d) of this title,
- A mental health patient representative,
- An individual who is volunteering at the nursing home or residential care facility without compensation and has received appropriate training regarding the explanation of advance directives, or
- A clinician, as long as the clinician is not employed by the nursing home or residential care facility at the time of the explanation.