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Florida Statutes § 765.401

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“The proxy under the civil rights law”

If an incapacitated or developmentally disabled patient has not executed an advance directive,  health care decisions may be made for the patient by any of the following individuals, in the following order of priority:

  • The judicially appointed guardian of the patient or the guardian advocate of the person having a developmental disability;
  • The patient’s spouse;
  • An adult child of the patient, or if the patient has more than one adult child, a majority of the adult children who are reasonably available for consultation;
  • A parent of the patient;
  • The adult sibling of the patient or, if the patient has more than one sibling, a majority of the adult siblings who are reasonably available for consultation;
  • An adult relative of the patient who has exhibited special care and concern for the patient and who has maintained regular contact with the patient and who is familiar with the patient’s activities, health, and religious or moral beliefs;
  • A close friend of the patient; or
  • A clinical social worker.

Any health care decision must be based on the proxy’s informed consent and the decision the proxy reasonably believes the patient would have made under the circumstances. A proxy’s decision to withhold or withdraw life-prolonging procedures must be supported by clear and convincing evidence that the decision would have been the one the patient would have chosen.



Current as of June 2015