Powers of Attorney:
Powers of Attorney are documents that a person can execute only if they are of sound mind. These documents should be executed before they are needed and most everyone should have them. They designate a trusted person to make important decisions in either health or financial issues. These Powers of Attorney impose strict responsibilities upon the person you designate to carry out your wishes. They are the documents that should be in place to avoid the need for guardianship in the event you become incapacitated. There are two (2) types of Power of Attorney:
The Medical Power of Attorney for Health Care allows you to name someone to speak for you in any health care decision in which you are incapacitated and no longer able to express your medical wishes. Your agent helps ensure that your previously expressed medical wishes are carried out with medical personnel. They can also negotiate on your behalf with any caregivers or long term care facilities.
The Statutory Durable Power of Attorney allows you to appoint someone to make financial decisions and transact business for you if you become incapacitated. This person would manage your financial affairs: paying bills, banking, paying taxes, or whatever business transactions arise on your behalf. You may choose whether you want this power to be effective immediately or when you become incapable of personally handling your affairs. For this reason it is extremely important that you choose a person who is trustworthy and will act in your best interest. It is suggested you have an attorney prepare this document for you so that it can be customized to address your specific needs and circumstances.