A Power of Attorney is a legal document that gives an individual the legal authority to make decisions for an incapacitated person. This document can be as sweeping or as limited as you desire, focusing only on certain factors such as health care or financial dealings, or granting a general authority to the agent for nearly all aspects of your life.
There are several types of powers of attorney. Some of the more common uses are:
Power of Attorney for Property
This document provides that a granted power of attorney will continue even after the grantor becomes incapacitated, whether by illness, injury, or mental incapacity. The powers granted under an Enduring Power of Attorney will continue until the death of the grantor. This type of document is useful in attending to financial dealings and other lifestyle decisions when the grantor becomes incapacitated.
Power of Attorney for Personal Care
This power of attorney is much like a living will, which is a written statement that indicates a patient’s desires regarding medical treatment and resuscitation practices, but does not name a person to be responsible for making decisions. With the use of a Health Care Power of Attorney, the agent selected by the grantor will be empowered to make decisions affecting the grantor’s treatment, including the termination of care and ending of life support functions.