When you sign a financial power of attorney document, you are authorizing this named person (or persons) to to make decisions on your behalf if you are not able to do so. Depending on the wording in the document, the appointed person, also called an “agent,” may have wide-ranging or very specific powers.
Your elder law attorney in Tampa can draft a power of attorney document so comprehensively that the agent can make any decision on your behalf. However, you can also limit the choices that he or she can make.
Types of Powers of Attorney
Depending upon your situation, your elder law attorney in Tampa can direct you toward several kinds powers of attorney to meet your needs, including:
- General power of attorney: Allows the agent to make decisions but this power is terminated if you become incapacitated;
- Special or limited power of attorney: Allows the agent to make specific decisions or actions, such as signing documents at a closing of a real estate transaction. This power is terminated, or limited to the specific action;
- Durable power of attorney: Allows the agent to make decisions before and after a determination of incapacity.
It is important to remember these documents go into effect the moment they are signed, and all of these documents are terminated once you die, or if you revoke the document and name a new agent while you have capacity.
An elder law attorney in Tampa can develop a power of attorney that gives your agent broad or specific authority. How much control you want to give to someone depends upon the relationship you have with him or her.
It Is Important to Name an Agent You Trust
Your power of attorney may handle your legal and financial affairs. As such, it is vital to choose someone with experience in these fields or this person has reasonable knowledge of how you would make decisions.
Choose someone who is:
- Trustworthy and fair-minded;
- Understands his or her duties;
- Demonstrates a commitment to these duties;
- Understands your values and wishes;
- Demonstrates loyalty to you.
Remember, you are allowing your agent to access your financial accounts. Choose your agent wisely.