Choosing a power of attorney constitutes a responsible decision. Though it may prove difficult to prepare for the worst, you will likely find comfort in knowing that you have chosen responsible adults to handle your affairs if you are incapable of making decisions.
Delegating both financial powers of attorney and medical powers of attorney holds real benefits. You may decide, before a tragic event would leave you unconscious or unable to make sound decisions, who has the authority to determine your monetary affairs and your medical treatment. In addition, deciding whom to grant this responsibility before you would face illness or injury leaves your designated individuals prepared for their responsibilities. In creating documents related to powers of attorney, you may wish to hire an attorney to ensure that you have filled out all necessary elements and signed all required forms to ensure your choices prove legal.
Financial powers of attorney responsibilities
Powers of attorney use their authority to help make decisions if you cannot make them yourself. Especially for financial arrangements, you want to ensure you have a trusted adult willing and able to act on your behalf with your assets.
Your financial power of attorney will make asset decisions if you authorize them to do so. You may wish to employ a power of attorney that has financial background, understands your unique financial situation or is a close family member. In Colorado, you can allow your financial power of attorney to make decisions regarding assets such as:
- Real property
- Stocks and bonds
- Banks and financial institutions
- Estates, trusts and beneficial interests
- Claims and litigation
- Retirement plans
You will check off each element to give access and authority to your financial power of attorney should you need their decision-making.
Medical powers of attorney duties
Many individuals choose to also document a medical power of attorney. If you know an individual that has medical knowledge or knowledge of your medical wishes and history, you may want to appoint them as your medical power of attorney.
These powers of attorney hold an important role in helping make medical decisions when you cannot, determining:
- Surgical avenues
- Life-saving measures
- Medical treatment
- Nursing home needs
Before naming a medical power of attorney, you may wish to discuss your current health state and any genetic health issues, so that your designated power of attorney can aid in sound decision-making regarding your health.
When developing and documenting powers of attorney, ensure that you discuss your decisions with an attorney, so that he or she can help include all required elements in your documentation.