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Examining the different types of power of attorney

Many in Saint Charles may think that the only purpose of estate planning is determining how your assets and property are to be distributed to your beneficiaries upon your death. Yet another major aspect of the process is addressing your end-of-life care (if you happen to be in a position where you might need assistance in making important decisions). Part of this may be deciding who to entrust with power of attorney over your affairs. When seeking assistance with this process, many of those who have come to members of our team here at Stephen A. Martin Attorney at Law have been surprised to learn that there are actually several different forms of power of attorney. 

Which you may need to empower another with depends on the types of decisions you want to authorize them to make. There are three distinct forms of power of attorney: 

  • General: This allows whomever has been entrusted with it to make almost any type of decision for you, including those related to your finances, healthcare and living arrangements
  • Limited: This form of power attorney grants one decision-making privileges in a certain aspect of your life, allowing you to maintain control over all other areas. 
  • Healthcare: Entrusting one with healthcare power of attorney allows them to determine the course of your healthcare (so far as those decisions do not conflict with any advance directives you have already established. 

According to the website, general power of attorney terminates if and when you become incapacitated. If you choose to endow one with  durable power of attorney, their decision-making authority continues beyond that. Springing power of attorney is only initiated in the event of your incapacitation. 

More information of the different aspects of estate planning can be found throughout our site. 

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