As reported in The Columbus Dispatch in an article titled “Family loses fight to keep son’s organs from donation” Elijah was a young man who was hit while riding his bicycle. As a result, he suffered very serious injuries and was later pronounced brain dead.
But that was not the end of it.
You see, Elijah identified himself as an organ and tissue donor when he applied for his driver’s license. [Note: this is one of those elections that can have some very binding implications and should be discussed with your loved ones.] In the case of Elijah, his family was caught unawary and this decision trumped the wishes of his surprised (and still grieving) family.
Elijah’s family fought because they felt it was not in his best interests. The family even fought against the organ-donor charity for whom Elijah’s organs were maintained until a court-order made the final call and completed the organ donation. This was the first time this particular organ-donation company has gone to court and it was a relative rarity in the nation overall.
As this case clearly demonstrates, serious thought and communication are required when planning all aspects of your life and estate. When it comes to organ donation considerations, ensure that your loved ones know and understand your wishes. The consequences of “checking the box” on your driver’s license application are not to be taken lightly.
Proper life and estate planning is not something to delay until old age. The decisions your make, or fail to make, affect you and our family at every age.
Remember: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When making your financial, tax and estate plans, do not go it alone. Be sure to engage competent professional counsel.
Reference: The Columbus Dispatch (July 12, 2013) “Family loses fight to keep son’s organs from donation”