What is Power of Attorney for Health Care & Property?

What is Power of Attorney for Health Care & Property?

Powers of Attorney for Health Care and Property (two separate legal documents) are used by the Principal (the person who creates the Power of Attorney) to appoint one or more Agents to act for them should they become incapacitated. The Power of Attorney for Health Care allows the agent to make medical decisions for the incapacitated Principal. Numerous Agents can be named but only one is allowed to act at any given time. A well drafted Power of Attorney for Health Care will also allow the Agent access to the Principal’s medical records. It is recommended that a copy of this Power of Attorney be give not the Principal’s primary care physician so that it can be made part of their medical records. A Power of Attorney for Property allows an Agent to make broad financial and real estate decisions for the Principal. There are two types of Powers of Attorney for Health Care and Property. The first is what is called the “springing” Power of Attorney. Here the Agent can only act for the Principal once he or she is determined by their physician to be incapacitated. The other type is known as an “immediate” Power of Attorney that allows the Agent to start acting for the Principal on the date the Power of Attorney is executed by the Principal.

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