COVID-19 UPDATE:
We are open for business. You can find more information here.

Free Divorce Guide Call: 360-866-7393

Lamar Odum and Khloe: Divorce and Medical Directives

Home / Blog / Lamar Odum and Khloe: Divorce and Medical Directives

When former NBA star Lamar Odom was found unresponsive and rushed to a Las Vegas hospital, his condition made national news. Many people were surprised by reports that his soon-to-be-ex-wife, reality TV star Khloe Kardashian, was making medical decisions for him. Media sensation aside, this event provides an important lesson for all men going through divorce.

Despite a very public marriage and their own spin-off reality show, Odom and Kardashian decided to separate in 2013. A lengthy divorce followed, with final paperwork not being signed and submitted to a judge until the summer of 2015. Due to the tremendous backlog of cases in California’s court system, the divorce decree had still not been signed by a judge at the time of Odom’s incident. Since the couple was not yet legally divorced, Kardashian was still his spouse, and able to make medical decisions for him.

Who Makes Medical Decisions When You Can’t?
When a person is unable to make medical decisions for themselves due to injury or illness, another responsible party must step in. For married patients that almost always means the spouse, while doctors will look towards parents or adult children if the patient is single. These medical decisions include everything from choosing between different procedures to making the decision to cease life prolonging intervention.

During a divorce, the parties remain legally married until a final judgment is issued by the court. That could lead to the very interesting situation of a man’s soon-to-be ex-wife making life and death medical decisions for him. While such circumstances are extremely rare, Lamar Odom’s case shows that it is possible. Thankfully, you don’t have to leave medical decisions up to chance.

Do You Need a Living Will?
Legal documents such as a living will and a durable power of attorney for health care allow you to specify an individual to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are incapacitated. You can also detail what treatments and procedures you will and won’t accept. If you are going through a lengthy divorce and don’t want your wife making healthcare decisions in the case of an illness or accident, you can appoint someone else as your attorney-in-fact for health care. This is especially important if you have started a new relationship. You wouldn’t want a hospital room conflict between your new girlfriend and your soon-to-be ex-wife.

If you had a living will before getting divorced, it is important to update it during or immediately after the divorce and name a new attorney-in-fact for health care.

While having your almost ex-wife rush to your bedside and start making medical decisions for you after an accident sounds like the plot to a cheesy TV movie, it can happen. Fortunately for Lamar Odom and Khloe Kardashian, everything worked out great. The celebrity couple has reportedly decided to call off their divorce and stay married.

Real People, Real Results

Divorce Lawyers for Men Reviews

"I never thought my wife would agree to anything. After a few discussions though, we were able to agree on a lot of issues concerning the children. Divorce Lawyers for Men helped me put those agreements in writing and resolve my divorce with less conflict."

"Divorce Lawyers for Men was very helpful with my case. The staff and attorneys are very knowledgeable and provided great advice. They provided me understanding of various courses of action and brought to light specific things I wouldn't have thought of. Most importantly respected my decisions and beliefs in finalizing my case."

"My wife wanted to live in our house with her new boyfriend while I kept paying the mortgage. Divorce Lawyers for Men made sure the court saw all our property and debts. We sold the house and split the proceeds. I didn't have to pay for any free rides."

"I never wanted to get divorced. One day my wife came home and said that she had met someone else. Why do I have to lose my house and my children just because she is done with our marriage? Thankfully, I hired Divorce Lawyers for Men."

Read More Client Stories

One phone call can change your life.

Are you ready to have a legal team on your side?

Call 360-866-7393
or CLICK HERE to Begin our 1-minute Contact Form.

Washington's Only Statewide Family Law Network

Select an Office near You.

Seattle Bellevue Kent Redmond Federal Way
Burien Tacoma Puyallup Port Orchard Spokane
Vancouver Everett Olympia Kennewick Richland