The Importance of Having Power of Attorney Documents

Trust and Estate Administration Attorney

Dylan Dam
Attorney | Vandenack Weaver Truhlsen

A Power of Attorney is a document that appoints an agent (also called an attorney-in-fact) to make decisions for you if you are unable to make those decisions yourself because you are sick, injured or otherwise incapacitated. Typically, there are two types of power of attorney documents: health care and financial. A health care power of attorney appoints someone who can work with your doctors and other medical professionals to make decisions that are best for your care. A financial power of attorney appoints someone who can handle decisions regarding your property and assets, such as working with your bank or managing real estate.

Choosing an attorney-in-fact is an important decision. You should take care to select someone who you trust and who you know will make good decisions on your behalf. Everyone who is over the age of 18 should have power of attorney documents in place. 18 is the age when a person becomes responsible for their own decisions, and when a parent no longer has the legal right to make decisions for their child. Many people also do not realize that a person’s spouse does not automatically have the right to make health care or financial decisions for them without having Power of Attorney documents in place.  By executing Power of Attorney documents, you will ensure that you will have someone who has the legal right to make decisions on your behalf if you cannot make the decisions yourself