Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney (“POA”) enables you to appoint an agent to take care of your daily affairs and make health care decisions and act o your behalf. Based on your wishes, a  Power of Attorney may become effective from the moment it is signed or upon the happening of a given event, say you become incapacitated. There are two types of Power of Attorneys:

  • Power of Attorney for Property and
  • Power of Attorney for Healthcare.

Power of Attorney for Property

A Power of Attorney for Property is a legal document, which allows you (the Principal) to delegate to another person (the agent) the power to make decisions regarding the Principal’s assets, finances, bank accounts and other types of property. The agent is often a family member or a trusted friend. The power of attorney for property is a flexible document in that the Principal can limit or broaden the decision-making authority of the Agent. The power of attorney for property can be revoked at any time and is automatically terminated at death of the Principal.

Power of Attorney for Property is commonly seen when you close on a piece of real estate but its power can be and should be greater than for that single event. If you do not have a power of attorney for property and become incapacitated, a court proceeding may be necessary to appoint a guardian to act on your behalf with respect to the management of your property. This process can be long and expensive, especially if family members disagree as to who should be elected as guardian.


Power of Attorney for Heath Care

A Power of Attorney for Health Care is a legal document, which allows you (the Principal) to delegate to another person (the agent) the power to make decisions regarding the Principal’s health care if the Principal is unable to make such decisions. The agent is often a family member or a trusted friend. The power of attorney for property is a flexible document in that the Principal can limit or broaden the health care decision-making authority of the Agent. The power of attorney for property can be revoked at any time and is automatically terminated at death of the Principal.

A Power of Attorney for Health Care permits the Principal to provide the Agent with a set of instructions regarding medical treatment such as basic or advanced medical procedures. If you do not have a power of attorney for health care and become incapacitated, a court proceeding may be necessary to appoint a guardian to act on your behalf with respect to the management of your property. This process can be long and expensive, especially if family members disagree as to who should be elected as guardian.