A Power of attorney allows you to give legal permission to another person to act on your behalf. You can give someone the ability to write checks, sign official documents, or handle other legal matters on your behalf. A power of attorney is often used if a person is going to be absent for an extended period of time (for example, oversees in the military), a person becomes incapacitated, or if a person needs someone to act in a specific situation.
Advantages of Power-of-Attorney for the Seriously-Ill
The use of a power-of-attorney for the management of the assets of a seriously-ill or disabled person has several advantages. The greatest advantage of the power-of-attorney is that it remains effective after the person’s incapacity. The agent can act immediately, upon the principal person’s incapacity, to manage assets and/or to take emergency measures without initiating costly and time-consuming proceedings to attain court authorization for such transactions.
Creating a Power of Attorney at the same as the Creation of a Will.
Often when creating a will, a person will also create a power of attorney to grant someone the authority to act on his or her behalf in the event they become incapacitated. This a useful planning tool for married couples where property is jointly owned. When one spouse becomes incapacitated, the other person can avoid a court proceeding and act promptly in situations where one spouse cannot act alone to sell, transfer or refinance jointly held property or registered securities without having to obtain the consent of the other joint owner.
A Power of Attorney can be a Medical Power of Attorney, a Financial Power of Attorney or both.
A medical power of attorney is one type of health care directive — that is, a document that set out your wishes for health care if you are ever too ill or injured to speak for yourself. When you make a medical power of attorney you name a trusted person to oversee your medical care and make health care decisions for you if you are unable to do so. This trusted person will work with doctors and other health care providers to make sure you get the kind of medical care you wish to receive. When arranging your care, your agent is legally bound to follow your treatment preferences to the extent that he or she knows about them.
To make your wishes clear, you can use a second type of health care directive — a “living will” — to provide written health care instructions to your agent and health care providers.
A financial power of attorney is a power of attorney you prepare that gives someone the authority to handle financial transactions on your behalf. Some financial powers of attorney are very simple and used for single transactions, such as closing a real estate deal. But the power of attorney we’re discussing here is comprehensive; it’s designed to let someone else manage all of your financial affairs for you if you become incapacitated.
Preparing an Estate Package at Coleman, Roles, & Associates
The attorneys at Coleman are available to prepare a valid will, power of attorney, and living will for $245-$425 depending on the complexity of each person’s situation. Contact us at 502-771-0588 to discuss what Estate Planning documents fit your needs.