As we get older, it is important to determine who you trust to handle your medical decisions should you be unable to. A power of attorney document is where you grant a trusted individual with the authority to handle any or all of your financial and legal needs if you’re incapable of doing so yourself. Working with a reputable lawyer to draft a durable power of attorney will allow you to choose who you trust for your needs. Keep reading to learn more about how a power of attorney can help you in the future.
Types of POA
Once you understand what a power of attorney is, it’s important to understand the differences between the two types of POA documents. This will help you interpret whether you could benefit from a medical POA, financial POA or both. POA documents offer different levels of protection:
–Medical POA: This POA gives a trustworthy family member or friend the ability to make medical decisions when you’re unable to or incapacitated.
–Financial POA: In a similar way to a medical or healthcare POA, a loved one can be placed in charge of financial decisions when you yourself can’t make them.
What Can a POA Do?
Whether you go for a medical or financial POA, the scope of what your chosen agent can do will be as narrow or broad as is permitted in the document. These are some of the decisions your chosen agent can make for your healthcare and financial needs.
–Medical: What medical care you receive.
Which doctors you use.
Where you live or what you eat.
-Financial: Access your financial accounts to pay for treatments and healthcare.
Make investment decisions and file taxes on your behalf.
Manage your property.
What Can’t a POA Do?
While there is a range of decisions your chosen agent can make under the POA document, there are also limitations to what powers the document grants them. For instance, your agent will not be able to change your will or make decisions once you pass away. Along with these examples, your chosen POA agent cannot transfer power of attorney to someone else either.
Thoughts No matter how old you are, it’s never too late to choose who you want as your power of attorney agent. When you’re ready to draft the documents, call on Family Law Richard E. Young & Associates to ensure they’re written correctly.