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Obtaining Power of Attorney for Elderly Parents

February 26, 2021

While obtaining a simple power of attorney isn’t necessarily difficult to do, it does require consideration of what’s best for you and your family. Working with a knowledgeable Springfield power of attorney elder lawyer is a sound approach for ensuring that all of your goals for obtaining a power of attorney are met and that it makes everyone involved feel good about the future.

Before you decide to obtain power of attorney from your parents, it is important to understand the basics and assess which type of power of attorney is right for you. It will also be far easier to discuss this strategy with your parents if you know how to explain why it’s important that you obtain their consent for power of attorney.

The Basics of a Power of Attorney

Power of attorney gives the obtaining party the right to make binding decisions on behalf of someone else. In this arrangement, the person obtaining the rights is called the agent, and the person sharing the rights is known as the principal. So, if you obtain power of attorney from your mom, you would be your mom’s agent. As an agent, you would be able to obtain financial, legal, and medical rights over the principal. These will typically be executed as a financial power of attorney or medical power of attorney, and within each agreement, it will be made clear what’s allowed under the power of attorney. For example, a medical power of attorney could allow the agent to make all medical decisions on behalf of your parent if they cannot make these decisions themselves.

Durable vs. Non-Durable Power of Attorney

When delineating your power of attorney, you will also have to determine whether it will be a durable or non-durable power of attorney. A durable power of attorney becomes effective the moment your parent signs it. It would automatically give you, the agent, the powers conferred under the agreement and would not expire until your parents pass away or unless they decide to revoke the power of attorney. 

A non-durable power of attorney, on the other hand, would be fixed to a specific instance or transaction. These types of power of attorney are typically used for single transactions and are not designed to last in perpetuity. For example, let’s say your father was gearing up to sell a property and wanted you to oversee the sale. He could grant you a non-durable power of attorney to oversee that transaction.

Determining which type of power of attorney you may need will depend on what your end goal is for your parent’s health and wellbeing. If they are slowly starting to have more trouble managing their finances or their medical care, then a durable power of attorney might be the best arrangement. 

Work with a Springfield Power of Attorney Lawyer to Explore Your Options

There are many different reasons you might want a power of attorney for your parents. An experienced Springfield power of attorney elder lawyer can review some of the benefits of obtaining this legal right on behalf of your parents. Contact our offices today to learn more.