When you are granting another person a power of attorney, you are giving that person your permission and the responsibility that comes with it of acting as your agent in certain situations.
A general power of attorney allows your agent to do almost anything on your behalf that you could legally do yourself, with the exception of giving away your assets as a gift!
A limited power of attorney specifies that the agent can only perform a certain limited number of acts or transactions for you. A temporary power of attorney may be used if you’ll be out of the country or indisposed for a limited period of time.
A durable power of attorney (DPOA) is one that is often included in estate planning. When you grant a durable power of attorney, you’re selecting and authorizing a person who will handle your financial affairs when you have become incapable of handling them yourself because of disability, generally associated with old age and impending death. The power of attorney goes into effect when you become disabled and will ordinarily last until your death. It is sometimes called a “springing” power of attorney because it springs into effect when triggered by an event—your disability. The agent has a fiduciary duty to act in your best interest.
A durable health care power of attorney is another type often used in estate planning is, which appoints a person who is authorized to make decisions for you regarding what kinds of health care you will or will not receive. That person should know your wishes before a disabling condition occurs, and should be familiar with your living will. When granting a health care power of attorney, you should include a HIPAA authorization that gives your agent the right to access you medical records.
A durable mental health care power of attorney is needed if you want your agent to be able to authorize admitting you to a psychiatric hospital in the event of mental disease or decline. In Arizona, a regular health care power of attorney does not extend to psychiatric institutionalization unless there is an added clause that allows it, or if a separate power of attorney has been granted for that purpose.
You might want the same person to have powers of attorney for your finances and health care both, perhaps a son or daughter, or you may choose a different person for each.
The attorneys at the Arizona estate planning law firm of Gorman & Jones, PLC, draw up any of these types of power of attorney that you wish to include as part of your estate plan.
A power of attorney is a way that you can ensure that the necessary decisions concerning your possible end of life matters will be handled according to your wishes by a person you trust and gives you a voice when your disability prevents you from making important personal decisions. For more information on how powers of attorney can add to your peace of mind as you approach your later years, contact Gorman & Jones, PLC, at one of our offices in Scottsdale, Phoenix, Sun City, or Sun City West for a complimentary initial consultation. We schedule appointments at your convenience with weekday and evening hours available.
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