If age, illness or an accident causes you to become mentally or physically incapacitated, who will make decisions about your medical care? Who will make sure all your bills are paid and financial needs met? Instead of being left to wonder and worry, contact Granholm & Gynac in Joliet.
Our firm can assist you in creating an estate plan that includes durable power of attorney documents for both medical and financial matters. We’ll explain what each type of POA covers and help to ensure that you’ve designated people to act for you and make decisions when you are unable to do so.
Medical / Healthcare POA
Due to strict federal HIPPA regulations regarding medical privacy, hospitals are unable to release healthcare information to third parties without authorization in the form of power of attorney for medical. Even if your husband or wife gets sick or injured and ends up in the hospital, doctors cannot tell you anything about their condition, even as a spouse, unless you’ve previously entered into a healthcare POA. For that reason, among others, medical power of attorney is a crucial part of every estate plan, even for otherwise young and healthy individuals.
Other issues a healthcare power of attorney can address:
- Whether you wish to be kept alive by artificial means should you end up in a coma
- Starting or stopping invasive treatments such as mechanical ventilation and tube feeding
- Your wishes as to donating organs and making necessary arrangements for your body should you pass away
Individuals can designate anyone as their healthcare power of attorney agent or successor agent, including people other than their spouse or children.
Financial Power of Attorney
In estate planning, financial powers of attorney are typically executed to designate someone to pay bills and manage your financial affairs should you become incapacitated and unable to do so while you’re still alive. Also known as general power of attorney or power of attorney for property, your financial power of attorney document delegates someone else to conduct business on your behalf.
At Granholm & Gynac, we can help you develop a financial powers of attorney document that includes your designated agent and provisions spelling out exactly how you want various assets managed. It can be limited in scope, such as authorizing someone to act as your agent at a real estate closing, or very broad in powers, such as giving someone the ability to manage all property, finances and bank accounts.