Are There Different Powers of Attorney?

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Different powers of attorney have different functions.

You know your estate planning should include incapacity planning, right?

The documents required to help you when you die only take affect after you have passed away.

Illnesses or accidents can leave you unable to make decisions without killing you.

According to a recent The Miami News-Record article titled “Power of attorney options match different circumstances,”you may need a power of attorney.

Incapacity planning should include powers of attorney.
Be prepared when tragedy strikes with powers of attorney in place.

Not all powers of attorney serve the same function.

You will need to select the correct ones for your unique needs and circumstances.

What are some of the various types of powers of attorney and their functions?

Durable and Non-Durable Power of Attorney.

These powers of attorney are the most commonly used.

When you are incapacitated, this document gives your agent the authority to fully make financial and legal decisions on your behalf.

The durable power of attorney means the power of attorney continues to be legally effective while you are incapacitated.

The non-durable power of attorney loses its authority when you become incapacitated.

It is important to have the correct one to meet your needs.

I would recommend opting for the former rather than the latter.

Medical Power of Attorney.

The medical power of attorney allows your designated agent to make medical decisions on your behalf.

This is covers both “get better” treatment and end-of-life care.

Your agent becomes the patient advocate for your wishes.

Springing Power of Attorney.

A springing power of attorney does not take effect immediately.

Instead of granting someone this authority while you are healthy, you can use a springing power of attorney to grant authority only on a certain date, event, or condition.

The usual condition is upon your actual incapacity as determined by one or more physicians who have examined you.

Limited Power of Attorney. 

A limited power of attorney gives the agent authority over specific issues like investments, banking, and the like.

In general, this grants power for specific transactions when the you cannot complete them because of illness, incapacity, or other commitments.

If your estate planning does not include incapacity planning, work with an experienced estate planning attorney to create such planning to meet your needs.

Reference: The Miami (OK) News-Record (July 7, 2020) “Power of attorney options match different circumstances”