What is a Power of Attorney?

HomeLegal Services BlogWhat is a Power of Attorney?

A power of attorney gives someone you trust the authority to act on your behalf when you are otherwise incapacitated. Without a power of attorney, a family member or friend might have to go to court to have an official guardian appointed, a process that can become expensive, lengthy, and public.

What is a Power of Attorney?

Many of our clients use powers of attorney to plan for future incapacity in regard to making financial decisions. For example, you may want to create a financial power of attorney to protect issues with your finances if you suffered dementia, a traumatic brain injury, or another impairment that harms your mental function.

There are also several types of powers of attorney, including a general power of attorney, durable power of attorney, special or limited power of attorney, and springing durable power of attorney. Each serves its own purpose, but in the end, creating these documents gives a person you trust the power to do some or all of the following for you:

  • Make financial decisions
  • Gift others money
  • Make healthcare decisions for you, including those related to withholding or stopping medical treatments, or giving certain medications
  • Recommend a guardian

Our firm recommends creating your power of attorney documents during times of stability. This way, you can choose the right person to act on your behalf and explain your wishes before an emergency happens. Find out more about creating a power of attorney to enhance your estate plan by contacting our firm today.