Press Release: Life Planning: Providing Your Wishes is "A Gift to Your Family":

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    Life Planning: Providing Your Wishes is "A Gift to Your Family"

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    For Immediate Release

    CONTACT: Teresa Weidemann-Smith
    State Bar of Wisconsin
    (800) 444-9404, ext. 6025

    Life Planning: Providing Your Wishes is "A Gift to Your Family"

    MADISON, November 11, 2004 – On behalf of Governor Jim Doyle, Attorney General Peggy Lautenschlager provided closing remarks at the Capitol about the importance of Life Planning in the State of Wisconsin. Life Planning Week, designated by the Governor for November 8-12, is an initiative to increase public awareness about the importance of preparing for future healthcare needs.

    "Planning ahead for future health needs can make all the difference to you and your family during a medical emergency, says State Bar of Wisconsin President Michelle Behnke. "Life Planning Week serves as a reminder for Wisconsin residents to discuss health care decisions and put their wishes in writing before that emergency happens. To keep this important issue at the forefront, throughout the coming months State Bar members will volunteer their time and expertise in communities during Life Planning Days to provide details and information on toll-free "hotlines" for interested callers."

    Planning ahead assists family members in carrying out eventual end-of-life treatment options and medical directives. The State Bar offers a free consumer guide, A Gift to Your Family, which provides information, instructions and medical forms. Over 6,000 copies of this valuable guide were downloaded from, the State Bar's web site during Life Planning Week 2003. This topic has been of great interest in the news as of late, especially with high profile cases such as Terri Schiavo's in Florida.

    The State Bar joined forces with the Wisconsin Health & Hospital Association, the Wisconsin Medical Society and Gundersen Lutheran Medical Center to develop the Life Planning Guide and promote statewide public service campaign on life planning beginning in 1999.

    The State Bar of Wisconsin is the mandatory professional association, created by the Wisconsin Supreme Court, for attorneys who hold a Wisconsin law license. With more than 21,000 members, the State Bar aids the courts in improving the administration of justice, provides continuing legal education for its members to help them maintain their expertise, and assists Wisconsin lawyers in carrying out community service initiatives to educate the public about the legal system and the value of lawyers.

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