What is a Power of Attorney (POA)?
A Power of Attorney is the written legal authority to grant an individual to act on your behalf allowing them to make important decisions in your best interest. This appointed individual will become your agent. Your agent should be a trusted spouse, adult child, relative or close friend.
Why do I need a Power of Attorney?
The most common reason you would need a power of attorney is if you become incapacitated and unable to make decisions on your own behalf. Having a Power of attorney will give you peace of mind that your agent will carry out decisions with your best interest in mind. Certain POA 's can help you by allowing an agent to make important healthcare decisions honoring your wishes or even allow an agent to handle your personal finances.
What types of Powers of Attorney are there?
Medical POA – This allows the agent to take control over healthcare decisions that need to be made in the principal’s best interest.
Non -Durable POA – This grants an agent temporary authority to act on your behalf, usually only for specific transactions. The Non-Durable Power of Attorney only lasts a set period of time.
Durable POA – With a valid power of attorney, the trusted person you name will be legally permitted to take care of important matters for you — for example, paying your bills, managing your investments, or directing your medical care — if you are unable to do so yourself. Your durable POA ends at your death or when you revoke your current POA .
Special or Limited POA – This allows the principle to assign only specific decision-making powers to an agent. This can be limited to certain areas and tasks such as the sale of a specific home or property.
Springing POA – This will go into effect at a future date in time when a certain event takes place. For example, when you become incapacitated only then does your agent have the power to make decisions.
How we can help:
Whether it’s financial decisions or medical there are multiple types of Powers of Attorney that you can appoint your agent. Call today and let us help you decide what POA is best for your needs.
Advanced Healthcare Directive (Healthcare Power of Attorney) provides instructions on your health care and what you want and do NOT want. It lets you give legal authority to another person (like your spouse or adult child) in advance to make any health care decision for you—including the use of life support—if you become unable to make them yourself. This document is much broader than a living will, and it can be legally enforced.
HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996) a US law designed to provide privacy standards to protect patients’ medical records and other health information provided to health plans, doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers. Make sure that your HIPAA (Authorization to release information) lists all your loved ones that you want to receive any medical information on your behalf.
Ready to start your Powers of Attorney? Need help choosing the right one for you? Aging in Maine can help. Call us at (207)848-5600.
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