Consensus is growing among ethicists and lawyers that medical decision making for incompetent patients who were previously competent should be made in accordance with that person's prior wishes and desires. Moreover, this legal and ethical preference for the substituted judgment standard has found its way into the daily practice of medicine. However, what appears on the surface to be an agreement between jurists, bioethicists, and clinicians obscures the very real differences between disciplines regarding the actual implementation of the sub stituted judgment standard. Ethicists and judges have carefully outlined how substituted judgments ought to be made and evaluated. Although differences arise, especially at the state court level, regarding the scope of the substituted judgment standard and its relation to other standards of surrogate decision making, agreement is fairly widespread on the priority of substituted judgment and on the necessity of sufficient evidence being available in order to support a particular substituted judgment.