What Is A Durable Power Of Attorney?
A durable power of attorney is a legal document executed by a person referred to as the principal. The person who is authorizing another person to act on his or her behalf is the principal, and the person who is authorized to act for the principal in their place is the agent or attorney-in-fact.
These legal documents are divided into two different types, durable and nondurable. A durable power of attorney, also known as enduring, is a type chosen so that the agent may continue to act for the principal even if the principal should become incapacitated due to a physical injury or illness. The durable type also remains effective at times when the person is also unable to communicate or make their own decisions. By choosing the durable type, the principal’s agent will be able to continue to act for the principal and manage their financial affairs or any other business-related issues regardless of an accident or illness. The two subclasses within the durable type are immediate and springing.
The scope of authority granted in a durable power of attorney depends on the situation. It may be general or limited to a specific issue. With the general type, the agent is given very broad authority to do anything permitted by law that the principal could do for themself. On the other hand, with a limited type the agent is limited to do a specific task, for example, selling of property, health care decisions, etc. A limited type is also referred to as a specific type.
Choosing an agent is a very important part of the process when a person is making this type of legal document that grants authority to another person. That authority may include access to the principal’s financial accounts or the ability to sell property. The agent is the person who is being relied upon to perform all of the duties that the principal has entrusted him or her to do in their place. The principal should choose a person which they can trust. A person who has been loyal and honest to the principal in the past. The best choice for an agent is a family member or friend, but you can choose others too.
For health care authorization, there is a durable power of attorney for health care. This type of authority allows the agent to make health care decisions for the principal when it has been determined by a physician that the principal is unable to communicate their own health care decisions. Prior to undergoing medical treatment the principal should discuss with their agent the types of treatment they approve of and the types of treatment they disapprove of.