Powers of Attorney and Living Wills
Do I need a power of attorney for finances?
Yes. With a financial power of attorney, you authorize someone to manage your finances if you become incapacitated. Without this power, your family’s only alternative might be to incur the expense and heartache of guardianship. Then you become a ward and your guardian will be accountable to the probate court.
Who Should By My Agent for my Financial Power of Attorney?
Do I need a power of attorney for health care decisions?
Yes. With a power of attorney, you authorize someone you name to make health care decisions for you if you become incapacitated and are no longer able to make those decisions yourself.
Who Should Be My Health Care Agent?
What is a living will?
A living will is a document that allows you to express your wishes about whether you want extraordinary measures taken, including artificial feeding, if you are beyond recovery and unable to make decisions for yourself. We can advise you on the nuances of these very personal choices and ensure that you express your wishes clearly.
What does it mean that a power of attorney is durable?
Both financial and health care powers of attorney are called “durable” when they continue in effect even after the person who created them is incapacitated. Under old English and American law, powers of attorney actually lost their authority at the incapacity of the creator (also called the “principal”). This old rule of the law of agency, which seems counterintuitive when powers of attorney most often are needed precisely because the creator is incapacitated, does not apply in a “durable” power. The power continues in effect even after the creator’s incapacity.