Here in Arizona, residents enjoy the opportunity to file an advance medical directive with the Advance Directive Registry operated by the Arizona Secretary of State’s Office. The registry is a free service, but it is important to properly prepare and file your directive if you wish to fully take advantage of this very useful tool.

The registry is an online tool allowing anyone you authorize to access your advance medical directive online at anytime. You simply file your properly created medical directive with the registry using the state’s guidelines and create a unique password. You may share your password with anyone you want to have access to the directive, such as a spouse, guardian or other trusted party, and they may access it at anytime from anywhere in the world as long as they have internet access.

Once you submit the directive to the registry, you must verify that it is correctly converted to its digital form before it is activated. Once you verify that the directive does not require any corrections and notify the registry, the directive is available to view online.

The registry is only for medical directives, and does not deal with any financial estate planning documents. If you are unsure of what you can and cannot include in an advance medical directive, an experienced estate planning attorney can provide assistance and advice. Advance directives may offer protections or advantages beyond what you expect, so be sure you understand the full scope of the matter before your create your own advance directive and file it with the Arizona Advance Directive Registry.

Source: The Dodds Law Firm PLC, “Estate Planning,” accessed Nov. 10, 2017