The estate planning process changes as you grow. What you may not have felt necessary decades ago may now become applicable. One of these elements of a detailed estate plan is a power of attorney.
When planning for your family’s future after your death, do not forget about what you may face as you age. Should a critical medical situation arise, do you have a plan? If you do not have something at the ready, you could suffer needlessly. Discover why a power of attorney document may fulfill many functions as you age.
What is a power of attorney?
A power of attorney gives someone else the right to make decisions for you. It is a legally binding document that allows your representative to act as you instruct. You usually designate a power of attorney for medical decisions and financial access.
What situations activate a power of attorney?
If a time arises that you can no longer make decisions, either due to unconsciousness or a cognitive issue, your power of attorney document activates. The document remains in place until a doctor deems you mentally fit or until you die.
What can your representative do for you?
When it comes time to pay your bills, you will want someone you trust to handle your money. A person with this power can buy and sell assets to pay for your care. What about medical decisions? You may either appoint the same person or someone else to make medical decisions for you. If you have a living will or other directives in place, this representative should follow through with your wishes.
A power of attorney gives you another way to care for your family and yourself. You get the chance to choose those you feel will stick to your wishes and do what is necessary.