When people think about estate planning, preparing documents like a will or a trust is important to guarantee that the property passes according to one’s wishes upon death. On the other hand, it is also important to think of managing one’s properties not only after death but during one’s life.
The Power of Attorney is a document in which you give the right to someone to act on your behalf. The person you grant the authority to act on your behalf is called as your “agent” and you as the “principal”. Most states accept powers of attorney that are created under another state’s laws, if they meet the new state’s requirements.
IMPORTANCE OF POWER OF ATTORNEY
Financial Power. When a person is ill or incapacitated for a short or long-term, they will be needing someone who can pay their bills, make decisions, and someone who can handle their financial matters. In Power of Attorney, they will need to specify the their agent and their wishes in their financial power of attorney. Financial Power of Attorney is a way for you to authorize someone else to manage your finances in the event that you become incapacitated and is unable to make decisions. It is where you legally authorize someone to act on your behalf in terms of your financial issues.
There are Three (3) Types of Financial Powers of Attorney that you can consider.
- General Power of Attorney. A General Power of Attorney broad powers to a person known as your agent or an organization to act in your behalf. This is included in an estate of plan to make sure someone is handling your financial issues. General Power of Attorney is effective until you pass way, but in some states and cases, general power of attorney ends when you become incapacitated.
- Limited Power of Attorney. A type of power of attorney that authorizes an agent to act on behalf of a principal. This is assigned for a specific purpose and time period. It is used when you can’t handle affairs due to other commitments.
- Durable Power of Attorney. This has the same function like general power of attorney but this remains effective even after you become incapacitated. You will be needing durable power of attorney for medical and finances when you become mentally incapacitated.
Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney. This delineates your wishes where Health care Power of Attorney authorizes someone else like your agent to make health decisions for you.
There are Three (3) Main Types To Consider.
- Living Will. It is a document that specifies the type of medical care that an individual may want or may not want in the event that he is not capable of telling his wishes. In Living Will, you can indicate the durable medical equipment you might want to use and you might not want to use. You can also include here if you want to donate your organs and tissues after death.
- Health Care Power of Attorney. It is a document that allows you to authorize an individual (agent) to make medical and end-of-life care decisions on your behalf.
- Advance Directive. It is where you name a person to make decisions for you in the event that you’re not capable of doing it.
How To Get Power of Attorney
Discussing Power of Attorney with your loved one or friend who is ill is very important. Having power of attorney is a cautious measure that’s taken to avoid complications. Here are some ways on how to get power of attorney.
- Know the type of power of attorney you will need to get.
- Contact a local lawyer or your city hall and inquire about the documents you need to obtain a power of attorney.
- Complete all the necessary forms.
- Review the signed forms with your lawyer.