Who Will Take Over When You Are Incapacitated?
No one wants to think about what “could” happen. But car accidents, strokes, illnesses and dementia are potential realities. When it comes to California estate planning, “hope for the best and prepare for the worst” is the attitude that affords you and your family the best protection.
At The Brooke Law Group, PC, our team understands that these are difficult but necessary conversations. We can help ensure that your estate plan is as comprehensive as it should be to offer the highest level of protection for you and your assets.
What A Power Of Attorney Protects
Power of attorney (POA) is giving someone that you designate the power to make decisions for you if you are unable to. This means that someone you trust will be able to manage your affairs in the event that you aren’t able to. This takes a huge burden off of your family. It typically gives people a sense of peace, knowing what will happen if they aren’t able to act or make decisions.
Two Types Of Power Of Attorney
There are two main types of power of attorney: financial and health care.
If you designate someone to make health care decisions for you, this person is your health care proxy. They will decide what types of life-saving medical treatment you will receive if you are incapacitated. Typically this is based on you communicating with them what you do and do not want, this may include a DNR form or POLST form.
When you designate someone to take over your financial affairs, this person is your financial power of attorney. There is more than one type of financial power of attorney.
- Financial POA can be limited in both scope and time. For example, someone may be able to sell your house for you while you are out of the country or be able to pay your bills and transact for you while you are serving in the military. This is called springing or limited power of attorney.
- Financial POA can be active during your entire incapacitation and cease upon your death. This is called durable power of attorney.
Financial POA typically ends when the principal dies. Usually, this is when the estate executor takes over. We can discuss your circumstances and decide what is best for you given your estate plan goals.
An Advance Health Care Directive Makes Your Wishes Clear
Putting your wishes down in writing is the best way to ensure that everyone understands your choices. You may wish to include what your intended goals are for treatment, where you want to receive care, organ donation and funeral arrangements, as well as who your chosen guardian or conservator is. Your health care directive (also referred to as a living will) can be as specific as you want or feel you need it to be.
Your health care proxy’s job is to ensure that your wishes are known and carried out. Sometimes people choose a spouse, but other times the better choice is the person you know will follow through on your wishes.
Plan To Put Your Family At Ease
We are committed to helping you and your family receive the planning and protections you need. We will always work toward your goals and put your best interests first.
We are just off of the 210 Freeway with ample free parking. At this time we offer video conference and phone meetings at 626-303-1806. To get started, call or connect with us by using our contact form. With an office in Monrovia, our team serves clients in San Bernardino and the rest of the Inland Empire.