When most people think about advance care planning, they think about completing an advance directive, also known as an advance healthcare directive. The law does not define which advance directive form you should use, just that the form includes some specific elements and instructions. The standard advance directive form in California allows a person to do either or both:

  • Appoint power of attorney for health care (health care agent).
  • Give written instructions to your health care agent and health care providers.
  • Take note: Naming a power of attorney for health care is different from naming a financial or fiduciary power of attorney (someone who manages your finances). The two require different processes and forms.

A variety of advance directive formats are available. The following advance directive form meets California’s requirements:

Coalition for Compassionate Care of California (CCCC)

Other advance directive forms are specific to selected circumstances such as:

  • Jehovah’s Witnesses
  • Persons with early dementia
  • Persons with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Many of these can be found on Coalition for Compassionate Care of California.
  • Note that not all advance directives are recognized by all states. Please check your state requirements before completing your advance directive.

PREPARE Advance Directive (California)

For those who prefer a simpler form, an easy-to-read California advance directive called Prepare for Your Care is available in multiple languages with step-by-step instructions.

California Hospital Association