The concept of “Power of Attorney” can be misleading. Contrary to popular belief, it doesn’t require an attorney to possess the power to act on your behalf. Instead, Power of Attorney (POA) is a legal arrangement that allows you to grant authority to someone else to manage your affairs in case you become incapacitated. In this article, we’ll explore the significance of POA in estate planning and discuss the three main types of POAs you should consider delegating as part of your comprehensive estate plan.
Financial Power of Attorney
Ensure your financial matters are taken care of with a Financial Power of Attorney. This type of POA becomes effective upon mental incapacity, usually requiring approval from 1-2 doctors. By designating an agent, someone you trust, you grant them access and control over your financial affairs. A financial POA can be invaluable in various situations, such as paying bills, managing medical expenses, and safeguarding your assets, including stocks and investments.
Health Care Power of Attorney
In times of medical incapacitation, having a Health Care Power of Attorney is crucial. By appointing someone to this role, you empower them to make important decisions regarding your health care. These decisions encompass treatment options, the type of care you should receive, and the choice of care facility. Similar to a financial POA, a health care POA typically comes into effect when doctors determine your mental incapacity to make these decisions on your own.
Mental Health Care Power of Attorney
In addition to a health care POA, Arizona law provides for a Mental Health Care Power of Attorney. This type of POA allows your designated agent to make decisions concerning your mental health care. These decisions may include determining the appropriate care facility and the type of mental health treatments you should receive, such as 24-hour care in a psychiatric facility or therapeutic services.
It’s important to remember that you have the authority to define the scope of decision-making power for your agent in all POAs. While it may be an uncomfortable topic to address, entrusting someone you trust to make these decisions is crucial. Without a designated agent, the court may need to appoint a guardian or conservator to act on your behalf. To avoid such a situation, contact Windrose Law Center today to establish your Powers of Attorney and ensure your affairs are handled according to your wishes.