The legal document known as a power of attorney (POA) allows you (the principal) to assign the ability to act on your behalf to another person of your choosing (the "agent").
In case you ever become mentally incapacitated, you'll need what are known as "durable" powers of attorney for medical care and finances,
according to the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Service (DADS). A durable power of attorney (DPOA) is a POA that will "endure" even if you become disabled or incapacitated. Under
you can assign different kinds of POAs, e.g., a General Power of Attorney, a Durable Power of Attorney, a Medical Power of Attorney, a Limited Power of Attorney, and other specific types regarding the guardianship of minor children, taxes, and even motor vehicles.
The durable power of attorney is highly recommended for seniors. As we age, we are more likely to develop illnesses or disabling conditions: that's just common sense. Having a DPOA will put your mind at ease, even if it never needs to be used. When it comes to your financial matters, your health care, or any other area of life that may require your decision, you are assured that, if needed, a trusted person who knows your preferences and wishes will be the one making decisions on your behalf.
Note: Having a Medical DPOA does not mean you are giving away your right to make decisions about your own medical care. The DPOA will only take effect when you no longer have the capacity to make your own decisions.
How do you choose the best person to hold your DPOA? This can be a difficult decision to make, and it's better to decide in advance rather than in a state of emergency or turmoil. If you are married, your spouse is legally designated to speak on your behalf if you become incapacitated. People generally choose a spouse, partner, family member or close friend as DPOA, but you need to be sure the individual you are considering is trustworthy and loyal, willing to take on the responsibility, and has the time to devote to your care as needed.
You need to feel comfortable with your choice of DPOA. Here are some points to consider as you make your decision:
- Is the person able to listen to and understand information about your medical situation and your health and home care needs? Does he or she perform calmly in potentially stressful situations?
- Does this person have your best interests at heart, even if your wishes go against their own personal beliefs or opinions?
- Can the person be assertive enough to stand up for your wishes in the face of opposition from family members; if such a situation arises? (You yourself may object to your own earlier choices if you suffer from mental decline.)
- Choose another individual to serve as backup in case your designated DPOA is not able to assist you for some good reason, such as being out of town? Read more
At Scott M. Brown & Associates, your POA solutions start with us. Offering the finest legal services to the residents of Houston, Texas for more than 10 years, Scott M. Brown & Associates will tenaciously pursue your wishes and intentions to ensure that your legal rights are protected. We've got your back. Call us today at (979) 319-5388, (281) 301-0874, or toll free at (800) 729-9142. We look forward to speaking with you about your case today.