A CONVERSATION YOU MUST HAVE
September 21, 2020
It can be an uncomfortable subject to broach with your loved one; however, it’s a conversation that you must have, especially while they have the mental capacity to agree to you being their agent. If they become incapable of agreeing to a Power of Attorney, you will then have to petition a court to become their guardian. This is often timely and costly. While I am not offering legal advice, I am listing resources and state-specific requirements for a Power of Attorney. If you don’t do anything else suggested in this blog, please do this as soon as possible.
You can have an attorney draft a POA or you can draft one yourself. If you choose to do this, make sure you understand your state’s POA requirements.
WHAT IS A POWER OF ATTORNEY
A Power of Attorney (POA) is a legal document that allows you to act as your loved one’s agent in business, private or other matters. It can be broad or limited to certain situations. Your basic duty as an agent is to act in your love one’s best interest. An agent has the power to:
Make gifts of money
Make healthcare decisions, including giving, stopping or withholding medical attention
Recommend a guardian
Make financial decisions, including paying bills and opening bank account.
As a caregiver, you want to make sure you have a Durable Power of Attorney – This agreement designates an agent act on the principal’s behalf. This type of POA includes a durable clause that allows the agent status to remain, event if the principal becomes incapacitated.
(National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys)