You will include many important features in your estate plan to ensure your passing is easy for your family. For example, you’ll likely assign someone as an executor of your estate to protect and maintain your property and assets. Additionally, you’ll name your beneficiaries so your family isn’t fighting over their due inheritance.
Most people only consider what their estate plan does after they die, but never before. That’s where powers of attorney are used. But, what exactly is a power of attorney? Here’s what you should know:
Making decisions on your behalf
Someone with your powers of attorney can handle any financial and medical decisions on your behalf if you’re incapacitated after an accident, unresponsive after surgery or develop a mental condition. The following are the two kinds of powers of attorney:
- A medical power of attorney: This person handles medical decisions that may need to be made regarding surgery, medication or end-of-life care.
- A financial power of attorney: This person handles financial matters revolving around debt, rent, utility bills, taxes or medical bills.
These roles can be given to individual people by the grantor (you) so that one person can take care of your financial matters and the other handle any medical issues. Alternatively, if you believe one person is trustworthy and responsible enough to make decisions on your behalf, then you may assign a general power of attorney to handle both your medical and financial matters.
If you’re unsure how to declare a power of attorney, then you may need to reach out for legal help with your estate plans.