Most people who are creating an estate plan think about what’s going to happen to their assets when they pass away. There are other elements to the estate plan that you have to think about. This includes making plans for taking care of your affairs if you’re unable to make decisions for yourself.
You can set up a power of attorney to grant someone the ability to make decisions for you if you’re ever incapacitated. There are two sets of duties, one for health care decisions and one for financial matters, that you need to assign to someone. They can both go to one person or you can set someone different for each one.
What can these individuals do on your behalf?
The person who has your medical power of attorney can make any medical decisions on your behalf. These must be in line with your advanced directive if you wrote out to let your medical care team know your wishes.
The financial power of attorney can make sure that your bills are paid. They can also buy and sell assets and do anything that you’d normally handle. You can set terms for this in the power of attorney document.
Anyone who’s creating an estate plan should ensure they include the power of attorney designation in the documents. Working closely with a person who understands your wishes and who can help you to get everything set up may take some of the stress out of this process. Getting it all set up now can give you peace of mind just in case something happens to you.