In some societies there are some agreements people sign about when they are in special conditions. For example, those who like to are asked to sign an agreement that after their death their body can be used for medical research or for helping patients in need. Or, maybe in some societies there are something people can sign in advance if they would want euthanasia in case their conditions are overly bad. The same kind of agreement might be required for other cases and conditions.

My question is if there is any word/phrase for such sort of asking people in advance to see if they agree with a certain kind of treatment in special conditions which might be the case in future.

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    Your use of "spatial conditions" is very strange. Are you only talking about death and wills or living wills? If not, what do you mean by spatial conditions? I've never heard it applied to wills before. And what else would you apply it to? Oct 21, 2018 at 19:03
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    @JasonBassford the question has spatial and spacial. I guess that they are typos for special. Oct 21, 2018 at 19:56
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    The specific examples you cite are wills and living wills.
    – Dan Bron
    Oct 21, 2018 at 19:58
  • @JasonBassford Sorry for the typos. As Weather Vane pointed, it is special.
    – Sasan
    Oct 21, 2018 at 23:43
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    @KannE There are no buttons for it. You have to use Markdown syntax: *italic*, **bold**, (link text)[http://link/], `code or monospaced text`. And so on.
    – Dan Bron
    Oct 22, 2018 at 18:28

2 Answers 2


I will provide an answer based on a comment I originally gave.

For how to dispose of a body after death, that is determined by somebody's will. But if you're talking about how to handle medical circumstances prior to death, the term you are looking for is living will.

From AllLaw:

A living will, despite its name, isn't at all like the wills that people use to leave property at their death. A living will, also called a directive to physicians or advance directive, is a document that lets people state their wishes for end-of-life medical care, in case they become unable to communicate their decisions. It has no power after death.

If you’re helping someone with their estate planning (or doing your own), don’t overlook a living will. It can give invaluable guidance to family members and healthcare professionals if a person can’t express his or her wishes. Without a document expressing those wishes, family members and doctors are left to guess what a seriously ill person would prefer in terms of treatment. They may end up in painful disputes, which occasionally make it all the way to a courtroom.

Also, people who have the authority to make medical decisions on behalf of a patient who can't speak (whether or not a living will is in place) are said to have power of attorney.

Per the Ontario government:

A Power of Attorney is a legal document in which you give someone you trust (called your “attorney”) the right to make decisions for you if something happens and you are no longer able to look after matters on your own.

There are two types of Power of Attorney:

  • Power of Attorney for Personal Care – the person you name can make decisions about your health care, housing and other aspects of your personal life (such as meals and clothing) if you become mentally incapable of making these decisions.

  • Power of Attorney for Property – the person you name can make decisions about your financial affairs (including paying your bills, collecting money owed to you, maintaining or selling your house, or managing your investments).

  • Note that one of your quotes contains "advance directive", which is probably the best "generic" term for this type of document.
    – Hot Licks
    Oct 22, 2018 at 22:01

The formal term for a document signed by (usually) a patient that specifies how to treat them (or not treat them) medically in case they are unable to speak for themselves is advance healthcare directive or advance directive.

advance directive
: a legal document (such as a living will) signed by a competent person to provide guidance for medical and health-care decisions (such as the termination of life support or organ donation) in the event the person becomes incompetent to make such decisions

An advance healthcare directive, also known as living will, personal directive, advance directive, medical directive or advance decision, is a legal document in which a person specifies what actions should be taken for their health if they are no longer able to make decisions for themselves because of illness or incapacity. In the U.S. it has a legal status in itself, whereas in some countries it is legally persuasive without being a legal document.

A living will is one form of advance directive, leaving instructions for treatment. Another form is a specific type of power of attorney or health care proxy, in which the person authorizes someone (an agent) to make decisions on their behalf when they are incapacitated.

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