What is a Power of Attorney?

What is a Power of Attorney?

When people create an estate plan, they are preparing for what will happen to their assets after their death. When this is done, people often find it important to appoint a power of attorney. Sometimes, situations in an individual’s life occur where they are no longer able to make decisions for their estate. When this happens, the power of attorney is able to step in and help. A power of attorney is an individual who is given the right to make decisions about an estate for the person who created it when they are unable to do so themselves. This may happen if an individual’s mental or physical health deteriorates and they are unable to communicate their desires. In the event of this, their power of attorney may be responsible for making decisions in the individual’s best interest. They follow the wishes of the individual who appointed them as their power of attorney.

What is a Power of Attorney?

A power of attorney is a person that can be involved big decisions of another’s life. If a person is dying or incapable of making decisions for themselves, a legal document can give another person the legal authority to make decisions on their behalf. This means a power of attorney must be a trustworthy individual who will act in the individual’s best interest. Many people choose a family member or a loved one to handle the job. It is very important that the power of attorney documents all of the individual’s wishes so they know the proper decisions to make if it becomes necessary.

A power of attorney does not have unlimited authority. Their power can be limited, as they only have as much influence as they are allowed. A power of attorney may be given the responsibility of making decisions regarding health emergencies, financial access, as well as other instances. The amount of control the power of attorney has depends on what is given to them. Because of this, each power of attorney may have different responsibilities.

Categories for Power of Attornies

There are different categories that cover different responsibilities that a power of attorney may have. These categories are broken up depending on what aspects of an individual’s life they are responsible for. The different categories are as follows:

  • General Power of Attorney: This allows the power of attorney to conduct the same fiscal actions that an individual would do for themselves. This may require filing taxes, executing contracts, or borrowing money.
  • Limited Power of Attorney: The power of attorney has more of a limited power than that of a general power attorney. They are restricted in the amount of authority they are given.
  • Durable Power of Attorney: This allows the power of attorney the authority to make decisions regarding an individual’s end of life care.
  • Springing Power of Attorney: This may allow them to come into power after a triggering event occurs. This may include a medical or physical disability.

Contact our Firm

If you have been assigned as a power of attorney and wish to consult a legal representative, contact JD Katz, Attorneys at Law today.

The attorneys at JD Katz have years of experience compassionately guiding clients in Maryland through the estate planning and administration process. Our firm also has experience with matters of elder law, business law, tax law, and litigation. For a legal team that will put your needs first, contact JD Katz today.

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