Dade City Powers of Attorney
Appoint someone you trust to act on your behalf when you are incapable of doing so yourself
A power of attorney is a legal document that appoints another person to act as your agent or attorney-in-fact. Depending on how this legal instrument is drafted, a power of attorney could give another person the authority to sign checks on your behalf, make bank deposits or withdrawals, pay your mortgage and utility bills, buy or sell property, prepare and file tax returns or engage a CPA on your behalf, and otherwise manage your legal or financial affairs.
A power of attorney can be given at any time. Perhaps you are going to be out of the country and cannot attend to business back home, or you simply want to empower someone to act on your behalf in a business transaction. More commonly, however, powers of attorney are drafted in the estate planning process to handle periods of incapacity. If you become unable to manage your affairs, even just temporarily, a judge may impose a guardianship over your estate if you haven’t made alternate arrangements. This guardian may be someone you don’t know or someone who does not know your wishes or whom you would not trust to make decisions on your behalf. With a power of attorney, you choose whom you want to make these decisions and dictate what powers and authority you do and don’t want them to have.
Powers of Attorney can be Durable or Springing
If you have a power of attorney now, it may not stay in effect if you become incapacitated unless it is what is known as a durable power of attorney. A durable power of attorney will stay in effect even if you become incapacitated, but it must be drafted correctly to have this effect.
Perhaps you only want a power of attorney to come into effect in the event you become incapacitated and not before. Obviously, you need to create the document now while you have the capacity to do so. Your lawyer can draft what is known as a springing power of attorney. This document “springs” into effect only when a stated event occurs, such as a period of incapacity. A power of attorney can also be revoked when you regain capacity.
A power of attorney can be crafted to meet your unique needs. Your attorney will sit down with you and discuss how broad or how narrow a power of attorney should be in your case. We can also create for you a Designation of Health Care Surrogate and other advance directives which as healthcare powers of attorney for medical decisions to be made on your behalf.
Comprehensive Estate Planning Assistance in Dade City and Pasco County
Planning for incapacity is a smart and essential piece of elder law estate planning, and powers of attorney are a critical part of your estate plan, along with wills, trusts and advance directives. For help crafting a comprehensive estate plan that meets all your needs, call the Law Office of Laurie R. Chane in Dade City. We serve clients in Wesley Chapel, Zephyrhills and throughout Pasco County, and we are committed to meeting your needs with skilled, solid and effective estate planning.