This article was co-authored by Clinton M. Sandvick, JD, PhD. Clinton M. Sandvick worked as a civil litigator in California for over 7 years. He received his PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1998 and his PhD in American History from the University of Oregon in 2013.
How To Obtain A Medical Power Of Attorney
There are 11 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.
Free Medical Power Of Attorney Form
This article was written for people living in the United States. Powers of attorney in other jurisdictions have different requirements and are used for different purposes, so it is important that you check the laws of your local jurisdiction if you do not live in the United States.
Adults who want their treatment preferences respected when they become incapacitated must create legal documents that direct medical professionals about how to treat them. At the same time, they should also think about giving someone a medical power of attorney. With this power of attorney, the agent makes medical decisions that are not specified in the living will. Unfortunately, people can suffer unexpected life-threatening injuries. But if you create a medical power of attorney, you can take control of your medical care if you become incapacitated. You also get peace of mind knowing that your wishes will be followed.
This article was co-authored by Clinton M. Sandvick, JD, PhD. Clinton M. Sandvick worked as a civil litigator in California for over 7 years. He received his JD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1998 and his PhD in American History from the University of Oregon in 2013. This article has been viewed 79,592 times.
A medical power of attorney gives a person of your choice the ability to make medical decisions for you. There are 2 main types of power of attorney in the US. A springing or conditional power of attorney takes effect when you are unable to make decisions for yourself, while a durable power of attorney takes effect immediately. Look for medical authorization forms on your state’s Department of Human Services website. Once you have completed the form, you must check and notarize it. Then send copies to your primary care doctor, close family and friends, and any hospitals where you are currently being treated. Read on for more tips from our legal contributor, including how to tell doctors how you want to be treated. You may remember your folks helping you open your first bank account and write your first check. And even though that was a long time ago, you may not be ready to reverse those roles when you take over your parents’ financial leadership. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for a parent to need the help of an adult child in managing finances, especially if that parent begins to lose mental acuity or the ability to make logical decisions.
Free Medical Power Of Attorney Forms
Of course, that doesn’t mean you’re just going to sign checks for your parents. You need legal authority to manage these finances, which you can get in one of two ways depending on the situation. Unless your parents are currently suffering from dementia or a medical condition that has reduced their ability to process information and make logical decisions, you and they can make a Power of Attorney (POA). But if your folks are incapacitated, you need to take a different approach and apply to the court for legal guardianship or conservatorship.
If you want to know how to get a power of attorney but aren’t sure where to start, we’ve put together this guide that covers everything you need to know. Get a clear definition of what a power of attorney is, how it works, the types of power of attorney, and how to proceed with the process.
A Power of Attorney (POA) is a legal agreement that gives one person the right to make binding decisions on someone else’s behalf. In this contract, the person who receives the right is called the agent or attorney, and the person who gives the right to make decisions is called the principal. A power of attorney can be broad or limited, allowing the agent to make decisions about the principal’s medical care, property, or finances.
For example, if the POA authorizes you to make financial decisions for your mother, you are the agent and your mother is the principal.
What Is Medical Power Of Attorney
The first step in starting the power of attorney process is recognizing when to use this option. A power of attorney may be recommended in a number of circumstances, including:
Once the need for a power of attorney has been determined, it is a good idea to seek legal advice from someone who specializes in family law. Each state has unique laws related to power of attorney, so you’ll benefit from having someone guide you through the requirements and process.
The next step usually involves a discussion between the principle, representative and legal counsel to decide what scope of authority should be granted. This agreement should be drafted by your attorney, and some states require signatures to be notarized. Once the POA document is executed and signed, it becomes legally binding. However, a POA document can be revoked at any time by destroying the original document and creating a new version, or by creating a formal cancellation document.
A general power of attorney gives the agent broad powers to make decisions in several areas of the principal’s life. Examples of decisions that an agent with a general POA can make include the right to manage bank accounts, manage assets, and submit payments under this policy.
Maine Medical Power Of Attorney Form
A general POA is most often recommended when the principal is out of the country for an extended period of time or is physically or mentally unable to manage their affairs for an extended period of time.
A limited power of attorney gives the agent the right to make decisions in one or more specific areas of the principal’s life. For example, an agent may be empowered to make decisions only about the principal’s medical care. Additionally, a limited power of attorney can even apply to a single transaction, such as authorizing an agent to sell a home.
Limited powers of attorney may only be valid for a certain period of time, such as if the grantor is out of the country for a pre-determined number of months or years.
A durable power of attorney takes effect as soon as the principal signs it and remains in effect until the death of the principal or the revocation of the agent’s rights. Even if the principle becomes mentally incapacitated, the durable POA remains active. For this reason, permanent POAs may be used when the agent is expected to make fundamental decisions over a long and indefinite period of time.
Power Of Attorney For Child
By comparison, the rights associated with any non-durable power of attorney are automatically revoked when the principal becomes incapacitated. Non-permanent POAs are often used for individual transactions and specific situations. For example, let’s say your father closes an escrow on a property while traveling internationally. In that case, he could draft a non-durable POA so that you can sign the closing documents on his behalf. If your rights are limited to this one transaction, the POA is both limited and non-permanent.
A strong power of attorney defers the agent’s rights until a specific condition is met. This condition may be at a future date or, more commonly, it may depend on the director’s health. Say your mom wants you to have power of attorney in case she can’t act on her own, but she doesn’t want to give you those powers today. You can draw up a power of attorney, which takes effect when two doctors confirm that your mother can no longer make decisions for herself.
Complex powers of attorney are legal in most US states, but in practice they present some challenges. Doctors may be reluctant to acknowledge your parent’s inability to make decisions, and financial institutions may be wary of agreeing to an initial POA, even if it’s signed by two doctors .
Drawing up a simple power of attorney is not difficult in itself. But since POAs are binding legal documents, you should have a basic understanding of how they work before moving forward. The information above should give you a general idea of the POA landscape, but for further guidance, we’ve detailed the steps below to obtain a POA for parents.
Make Medical & Financial Powers Of Attorney, And Protect Your Family
At this point, you should have a better idea of what type of power of attorney would be appropriate for your situation. If your parent is working today but has been diagnosed with a degenerative condition, for example, you’ll probably want a permanent power of attorney. This way, you can seamlessly take over finances and health care decisions without having to get approval from his medical team. If you’re worried about your parents’ finances while they travel the world for a year, a non-durable financial power of attorney may be more appropriate.
Whatever your plan is, you must agree with your parents
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