Free End-of-Life Plan

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End-of-Life Plan



Frequently Asked Questions
What is an executor?An executor is a trusted individual named in your Last Will and Testament to administer your estate. Your executor is responsible for tying up your financial and legal matters as well as distributing your assets to beneficiaries.Who should I choose to carry out my final wishes?Many people appoint the executor (also known as a personal representative) of their Last Will to carry out their final arrangements. If this isn't possible or desirable for you, be sure to choose someone you know and trust to carry out your end-of-life plans.

In Virginia, you may direct the disposal of your remains and your memorial arrangements in a notarized written document. The individual you appoint to carry out your final wishes must sign the document before taking action under it.

Normally the authority to make decisions about your remains and make memorial arrangements goes to the following people, in order:
- The person named in your written document
- Your spouse
- Your adult children
- Your parent
- Your adult siblings
- The guardian of your minor child
- The guardian of your minor siblings
- Your grandparent
- Your aunt or uncle
- Any other relative in the descending order of blood relationship

Your End-of-Life Plan

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End-of-Life Plan for ________________________

I, ________________________, currently of _______________, VA, being of sound mind, willfully and voluntarily declare that these are my final wishes as to the disposition of my body after my death and any services or memorialization to be held in my name.

This document is not intended to be interpreted as my Last Will and Testament.

    1. Appointee
    2. I request that the executor of my Last Will and Testament, ________________________, currently of _______________, VA, be in charge of planning and executing my last wishes.
    1. Death Announcement
    2. I do not wish to have any announcement published online or in print upon my death.
    1. Organ Donation
    2. I wish to donate my organs upon my death and am a registered organ donor in the state of Virginia.
    1. Final Disposition of My Body
    2. Upon my death, I have no preference as to how my body is dealt with.
    1. Services in My Memory
    2. Upon my death, I do not wish to have any formal services held in my honor.

I recognize that it may not be possible for my appointee to fulfill all of my wishes and request that ________________________ act to follow the spirit of these wishes as well as they can and within the limits of any applicable law.







SIGNED AND DECLARED by ________________________ on the ______ day of ________________, ________ to be the declarant’s End-of-Life Plan expressing their own wishes as to the disposition of their body and any services to be held in their name. We declare that ________________________ is personally known to us, that they signed this End-of-Life Plan in our presence, and that they appeared to be of sound mind and not acting under duress, fraud, or undue influence.



Witness #1 Signature

Witness #2 Signature



Witness #1 Name (please print)

Witness #2 Name (please print)






I hereby accept appointment as the appointee for the control and execution of the declarant's final wishes as stated in the preceding End-of-Life Plan.

Appointee Signature
Appointee Name (please print)



COUNTY OF _______________

I ____________________, a Notary Public in and for said County and State, hereby certify that ________________________ , whose name is signed to the foregoing instrument and who is known to me (or satisfactorily proven), acknowledged before me on this day that, being informed of the contents of the End-of-Life Plan, he/she executed the same voluntarily on the day the same bears date.

Given under my hand this ____ day of ____________, _____.

Notary Public

My commission expires:_______________

Last Updated April 5, 2024

Written by 

Reviewed by 


Fact checked by 

What is an End-of-Life Plan?

An End-of-Life Plan is an estate planning document outlining your final memorial and burial wishes. This can include details like whether you want a formal service and how you want your remains handled.

An End-of-Life Plan is also known as a:

  • Funeral planning document
  • Final wishes document
  • Last wishes document
  • Burial instructions
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Why is having an End-of-Life Plan important?

Think of an End-of-Life Plan like a checklist or guide detailing how you want your friends and family to celebrate your life. Outlining your wishes helps your family because they won’t have to guess about what you want and make tough decisions while they grieve.

An End-of-Life Plan is only one of the essential estate planning documents that every adult should make. To help prepare your loved ones for the future, having these documents ready will further help them should anything happen to you:

These documents will give your family peace of mind, knowing they can follow through with all your final wishes regarding financial responsibilities, medical care, and more.

How to write an End-of-Life Plan

LawDepot’s user-friendly questionnaire allows you to include all the key information to complete your End-of-Life Plan. Customize your plan by including your wishes for the following:

1. Appointee

An appointee is the person, or people, you choose to carry out your wishes to the best of their ability. An appointee can be a spouse or other reliable adult. Also, if you have an existing Will, your executor may also act as your appointee. 

2. Announcement of your passing

This step details how you would like your appointee to inform people of your passing. Options can include a small, informal notice or an obituary

3. Organ donations

Many people wish to help others after their passing through organ donation. In your End-of-Life Plan, state if you’re an organ donor to ensure your appointee and loved ones are aware of your wishes and reduce delays in medical personnel removing any donated organs.

If you’re not already an organ donor but wish to be one, you can register online through your state's donation page.

4. Your remains

Once you’ve passed, your family needs to know how you wish your remains to be handled or prepared for burial. This can include being:

  • Buried in a cemetery or private plot
  • Entombed in a mausoleum
  • Donated to medical science or education
  • Cremated and having your ashes buried, entombed, given to a loved one, or spread at a specific location

5. Funeral wishes

Creating your End-of-Life Plan includes providing your family with your wishes for your funeral. Types of arrangements include:

  • Funeral
  • Graveside service
  • Memorial service
  • Visitation or viewing

While outlining your funeral wishes, include any specific religious or spiritual traditions you may want your family to conduct. 

6. Financial planning 

To help your family follow through with your requests, you can include details on the funding for your final wishes, such as burial and funeral services. In your plan, you can indicate if you have put aside savings specifically for these plans or if your estate will reimburse any costs. 

7. Final thoughts and messages

To finish up your End-of-Life Plan, you can leave any final thoughts or messages for your loved ones. Write them in your End-of-Life Plan for them to read upon your passing.

8. Any other final instructions

Our questionnaire allows you to highlight any further instructions you wish your loved ones to have that may be more specific. For example, if you want a memorial or funeral service, you may decide to have family and friends donate to a charity of your choice rather than send flowers for the service.

Does an End-of-Life Plan need to be notarized?

To validate your chosen disposal of your remains and funeral requests, some states may require your End-of-Life Plan to be notarized. LawDepot’s questionnaire is customized for each state to ensure you know when you must notarize your plan or have it witnessed. 

LawDepot offers Online Notary services to notarize your documents securely and easily from home.

Is an End-of-Life Plan legally binding?

Though an End-of-Life Plan is not legally binding, it’s still essential for appointees or executors to fulfill your wishes to the best of their ability. 

To help your appointee, discuss your plan with them and other loved ones so they know your wishes, where any funds will come from, and how they can best fulfill your requests.

Related Documents:

  • Last Will and Testament: Specify how your assets and property will be distributed after your death.
  • Power of Attorney: Appoint someone to make financial, legal, and business decisions for you if you become incapacitated or cannot do so on your own.
  • Living Will: Specify your health care preferences and appoint someone to make decisions for you if you are incapacitated.
  • Personal Care Profile: Summarize your cultural beliefs, social interests, or other personal information that caregivers can use to improve your quality of life if you become ill or incapacitated.
  • Just-In-Case Instructions: Write out the details of your personal, legal, and financial documents and where to find them for your executor.
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End-of-Life Plan

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