What Does Medical Power of Attorney in Texas Mean?

What Does Medical Power of Attorney in Texas Mean?

What Does Medical Power of Attorney in Texas Mean?

Obtaining a medical power of attorney in Texas is an important concern that a dedicated estate planning attorney at Ibekwe Law, PLLC can help you effectively and efficiently resolve. Power of attorney is an important concept when it comes to estate planning. When your finances are involved, power of attorney (POA) refers to the agent you choose to handle your financial affairs if you are unable to do so. However, medical power of attorney (Medical POA), on the other hand, refers to a specific advance directive (which means that it is created in advance of its need) that provides you with a straightforward mechanism for naming someone whom you trust implicitly to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so for yourself. If you are interested in learning more, such as how to get a medical power of attorney in Texas, reach out to the dedicated Texas estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC (512-505-2753) today.

How Do I Choose the Right Medical Power of Attorney for Me?

Choosing the right Medical POA for you is a very personal decision. You will need to give it the careful consideration it deserves if you decide to put it in your Last Will and Testament in the state of Texas. For some people, it is an obvious choice, such as a spouse of many years, but there are a variety of factors to ponder upon, including:

  • It is essential to choose someone you trust entirely, including trusting them to carry out your wishes regarding your medical care.
  • It is vital to choose someone who understands your thinking and knows your wishes regarding the medical care you receive (if you have strong opinions about what you do or do not want in terms of medical procedures and treatments –perhaps related to your religious beliefs –it is critical that your agent understands your reasoning and is willing to stay the course).
  • It is crucial to choose someone who knows your values and your religious and moral beliefs and is capable of and comfortable with making medical decisions on your behalf that align with these beliefs and values.

Finding the right person to become the agent of your medical POA can be a challenge –especially because a loved one, such as your spouse, may not be comfortable making decisions that do not comport with their desire to keep you alive at all costs (regardless of whether or not this decision aligns with your wishes). This can be a lot to ask of a loved one and needs to be given the careful consideration it requires.

Who Cannot Be Your Power of Attorney?

Any competent adult can serve in the role as an agent for a medical power of attorney –with a few specific exceptions (that are in place for your protection), including:

  • Your doctor or healthcare provider
  • An employee of your doctor or healthcare provider (unless the person is a relative of yours)
  • Your residential healthcare providers, such as at your nursing home or assisted living facility
  • An employee of your residential healthcare provider (unless the employee is s relative of yours)

When Does a Medical Power Attorney Go into Effect?

Many people are nervous about naming a medical POA because they have concerns that the decision-making power attached could be implemented in a less-than-careful manner –as if you are handing over the reins to your health care somewhat arbitrarily.

To step in and begin making healthcare decisions on your behalf, your agent will need to have your doctor’s opinion (in writing) that you are not able to make these decisions for yourself, and this decision-making power only remains in effect throughout your incapacitation. Your doctor has the power to revoke the Medical POA at any time (based on your evolving condition). In other words, the process is carefully monitored and is set up to help ensure that your wishes regarding your health are carried out (in the event you are incapable of ensuring this).

How to Get a Medical Power of Attorney in Texas

The basic steps for obtaining a medical POA in Texas are pretty straightforward, including:

  • Decide that a medical POA is the right choice for you
  • Download, fill out, complete, and print out the Medical Power of Attorney Designation of Health Care Agent form
  • Gather two witnesses (one of whom cannot be your agent, a relative of yours, your doctor, or a beneficiary of yours) and have the medical POA form notarized.

It is important to note that it is always in your best interest to involve a dedicated estate planning attorney in the process. Your medical power of attorney is a profound legal document, and understanding the implications it can have for you and your family if you are unable to make medical decisions on your own is too significant to leave to chance.

An Experienced Texas Estate Planning Attorney Can Help With Your Medical Power of Attorney in Texas

Taking care of your estate planning needs is an essential component of protecting your family and cementing your legacy. A critical piece in the puzzle is establishing your medical power of attorney. If you are ready to address the issue of how to get a medical power of attorney in Texas, consider reaching out to the experienced estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC. We help clients like you achieve the peace of mind that comes from successfully addressing their medical power of attorney needs. We are here for you, too, so please do not wait to contact or call us at 512-505-2753 for more information today.

When to Seek A Financial Power of Attorney in Texas

When to Seek A Financial Power of Attorney in Texas

When to Seek A Financial Power of Attorney in Texas

A financial power of attorney is a legal document that allows you (the principal) to assign specific financially based decision-making power to someone else (the agent or attorney in fact). This agent need not be an attorney, however. A financial power of attorney is a legal mechanism that provides you with the peace of mind that comes from knowing someone will take care of your financial affairs if you cannot take care of them yourself. A financial power of attorney can be a powerful tool in your estate planning lineup. If you have questions about obtaining a power of attorney in Texas, the experienced estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC (512-505-2753) are here to help.

The Primary Reasons for Having a Financial Power of Attorney

There are two primary reasons for having a financial power of attorney (POA), and they fill different and distinct needs, including:

  • If you need to take care of a financial transaction but cannot be physically present to do so, you can execute a financial POA that explicitly allows the assigned agent to address only the financial matter at hand on your behalf. If, for example, you are out of the country when a deed to transfer title of property needs to be signed, you can assign a financial POA to take care of the matter for you.
  • A financial POA allows you to assign someone you trust implicitly to handle your financial matters if mental or physical incapacity prevents you from doing so; this is called a durable power of attorney.

The Type of Power Granted

Your durable financial POA grants a person you trust completely to make financial decisions on your behalf if you cannot do so. For example, suppose a car accident were to leave you seriously injured and temporarily unable to address your financial dealings. In that case, your POA could step in and manage your financial affairs until you are ready to resume the task. It would work the same way if you were permanently incapacitated.

While these are not pleasant matters to consider having a financial POA in place assures that in the unlikely event you are incapacitated, your financial affairs will be taken care of –following your intentions and in support of your legacy. Addressing the issue of a financial power of attorney can be daunting, but the dedicated Texas estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC have the experience, legal insight, and drive to help you make the right decisions for you and to help you establish a financial POA that provides you with the peace of mind you seek.

Is Now the Right Time?

Yes. It is always the right time to address a financial power of attorney. It is essential to point out that estate planning does not apply only to the wealthiest among us. If you have begun to establish a career, it is an excellent time to consider estate planning. Estate planning is not fancy or mysterious. Instead, it refers to addressing your financial legacy and how everything you have worked so hard to amass will flow to your loved ones –with the fewest tax implications and the least amount of governmental intervention possible –when the time comes.

If this resonates with you, now is a great time to address the matter of estate planning (if you have not yet done so) and to consider assigning a financial power of attorney. Life is nothing if not unpredictable, and although it is unlikely that your financial POA will be implemented any time soon, proactively approaching the matter is paramount.

How to Obtain a Power of Attorney in Texas

Suppose the question of obtaining a power of attorney in Texas is on your mind. In that case, first, make the preliminary decision of whom you trust to take over your financial affairs if the need should arise. The agent of your financial POA must be someone you trust without reservation to make financial decisions on your behalf that comport with your intentions and that are in your best interests. This, in other words, is not a decision that you should make lightly. Assigning a spouse or another close family member is common. As long as your decision sits well with you and does not give you a moment’s hesitation, you will have chosen wisely.

The next step in obtaining a power of attorney in Texas is discussing the matter with your chosen agent to ensure they feel comfortable accepting the tremendous responsibility required. From here, you will move forward with an exacting form and filing that you are well-advised to address with an experienced Texas financial planning attorney.

Seek the Professional Legal Counsel of an Experienced Texas Estate Planning Attorney Today

Your estate plan symbolizes and protects your legacy, and it is an important tool that can help ensure your financial intentions are carried out when the time comes. Having a financial power of attorney in place is an essential piece in the estate planning puzzle. The financial POA assigns financially based decision-making power to someone you trust to make decisions on your behalf if you are physically or mentally incapable of managing your financial affairs on your own.

Suppose the question of how to obtain a power of attorney in Texas is on your mind, the accomplished estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC. In that case, PLLC has reserves of experience helping clients like you gain the peace of mind they are looking for. To learn more about the financial power of attorney, please do not wait to contact or call us at 512-505-2753 today.

Selecting the Right Attorney-in-Fact for Your Medical Power of Attorney

Selecting the Right Attorney-in-Fact for Your Medical Power of Attorney

Selecting the Right Attorney-in-Fact for Your Medical Power of Attorney

Unfortunately, there are instances where accidents or injuries occur, and a person cannot make medical decisions on their own behalf. An attorney-in-fact for a medical power of attorney will make important healthcare decisions on your behalf if you cannot do so. The skilled Texas estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC can help you take care of this essential element of your estate plan.

You may have heard of medical power of attorney, a legal document that assigns medical decision-making power if you cannot make important medical decisions on your own, and the person to whom you give this responsibility is called the agent or the attorney-in-fact.

It can be a bit confusing because the attorney-in-fact for your medical power of attorney need not be an attorney (and most are not). When selecting the right attorney-in-fact for medical power of attorney, the primary concern is choosing someone you trust implicitly to make decisions that comport with your wishes and that are in your best interest. If you have questions or concerns about your medical power of attorney and about assigning an attorney in fact, contact the experienced Texas estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC the legal guidance you are looking for.

Attorney-in-Fact for Medical Power of Attorney

The attorney-in-fact whom you name for your Texas medical power of attorney (MPOA) is the person you choose to make specific medical decisions on your behalf if you are physically or mentally incapacitated and, therefore, unable to do so. This decision-making power is not without limitations. The attorney-in-fact for medical power of attorney’s decision-making power is subject to any conditions that you include in the legal document itself (your medical power of attorney) and subject to all applicable legal restrictions, including:

  • Restrictions related to withdrawal of life support systems
  • Restrictions related to withdrawal of food and fluids
  • Restrictions related to medical treatments designed solely to maintain physical comfort

When the Agent’s Decision-Making Power Is Initiated

The attorney-in-fact for medical power of attorney does not have the power to swoop in and begin making decisions for you of their own accord. This authorization will come into play only if the situation is so significant that a doctor signs off on the need for a medical power of attorney (sometimes, more than one doctor’s input is required). Suppose the doctor in question determines that you can make your own medical decisions and speak for yourself. In that case, there will be no need for intervention from your attorney-in-fact, but if that doctor determines otherwise, your attorney-in-fact will be required to weigh in on your behalf. The kinds of medical conditions that can initiate this need include:

  • Suffering a stroke or other brain injury that leads to coma
  • Losing the ability to communicate due to dementia or another disease
  • Suffering from a mental condition that is incapacitating

Matters related to your medical power of attorney are essential matters. The dedicated estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC have the legal skill and knowledge to help you better understand what is involved and help you make the right choices.

Letting Your Loved Ones Know

Once you have a medical power of attorney in place and have designated your attorney-in-fact, it is important to notify all those people who may be involved in your care about the document’s existence and to provide them with a copy. Examples of critical recipients include:

  • Critical family members
  • Your doctor
  • Your hospital
  • Your attorney

The Authority Bestowed

The kinds of decisions your attorney-in-fact may be called upon to make include:

  • Which medical treatments, including drug treatments, to pursue
  • Which medical tests to run
  • Which medical facilities to use and which medical professionals to consult
  • How aggressively to treat brain damage, condition, or disease
  • Which surgical options to pursue
  • Whether to pursue treatments that are based solely on comfort and quality of life
  • Whether to do everything possible to extend life

Choosing the Right Attorney-in-Fact for You

Common choices when it comes to attorney-in-fact include:

  • Your spouse or significant other
  • An adult child
  • A close sibling
  • A best friend

Ultimately, it is crucial to select someone you trust implicitly, but there is more to it than that. For example, suppose you have made the difficult decision that you do not want a breathing or feeding tube to keep you alive. In that case, a family member may find complying with this choice exceptionally difficult. If your personal medical decisions are going to be challenging for a family member to make, it can make your selection process more complicated. The attributes you are looking for in an attorney-in-fact, include:

  • Someone willing to discuss your intentions related to your medical care with you, including addressing specific pertinent scenarios
  • Someone who can put aside their feelings to honor that your wishes for specific medical options or procedures
  • Someone who is capable of understanding your doctors’ medical explanations and is prepared to ask challenging questions if the need should arise
  • Someone who is willing to read your living will and is capable of understanding the information therein
  • Someone who understands your wishes related to end-of-life care and is prepared to act on them

The mechanism for designating your attorney-in-fact (the person who is up to all of these immense responsibilities) is the Texas Medical Power of Attorney Designation of Health Care Agent form.

An Experienced Texas Estate Planning Attorney Can Help

Selecting the right attorney-in-fact for medical power of attorney is an important task, but it need not be daunting. Working closely with a focused Texas estate planning attorney will help you better understand the legal process, help you explore your options, and help you make choices that are right for you. Your medical power of attorney is a critical component of your estate plan that should not be overlooked. AtIbekwe Law, PLLC, our practice focuses on helping clients like you create medical powers of attorney that provide them with the peace of mind they are looking for. We are committed to helping you, too, so please do not hesitate to contact or call us at 512-505-2753 today for more information about selecting the right attorney-in-fact for your medical power of attorney.

Should You Spring a Durable Power of Attorney?

Should You Spring a Durable Power of Attorney?

Should You Spring a Durable Power of Attorney?

An experienced estate planning attorney can help you determine whether or not you should spring a durable power of attorney. Having professional legal counsel in your corner can provide you with information to make the best possible decision for your specific circumstance.

The term spring a durable power of attorney may sound a bit odd. Still, it refers to springing a durable of power or attorney into action if you become incapacitated. Many people have a difficult time with the idea of effecting a power of attorney. Some people who can make sound decisions are more comfortable with the option of springing a durable power of attorney into effect if it should ever become necessary. In the end, decisions related to a durable power of attorney tend to be quite complicated, but the dedicated estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC (512-505-275) in Texas can help you determine what the best path forward is for you.

Powers of Attorney: Their Scope

Powers of attorney are documents that are generally intended to help those to whom they apply (the principals) manage their affairs in any or all of the following areas:

  • Medical care
  • Financial concerns
  • Legal matters

The responsibility of power of attorney (POA) is assigned to someone (the agent) whom the principal trusts to carry out the job at hand –regardless of the POA’s scope and purpose. Sometimes, the principal remains capable of making the decisions involved on his or her own but wants to ensure that they have backup when making important medical, financial, and/or legal decisions.

When they are well-crafted, POAs can help ensure that there is a trusted agent available who is ready to step in and keep matters moving forward smoothly if it becomes necessary –without the costly and time-consuming legal hassles that may occur when there is no POA in place. A durable power of attorney is activated upon execution (when the document is signed), and a sprung POA –as mentioned –is activated or sprung only if the principal is incapacitated. The scope of every POA –the kinds of decisions the agent will be making –is outlined in the POA itself, and this is what makes working closely with an accomplished estate planning attorney so important.

Granting Power of Attorney

The person who becomes your power of attorney –the agent –is also known as the attorney in fact, but he or she need not be an attorney. You can make virtually any adult whom you trust to do the job at hand POA’s agent. Because your POA can be highly specific, even a durable POA that goes into effect immediately upon signing need not be a frightening prospect. For example, bestowing your POA the power to pay your medical bills or other monthly expenses is quite specific, and there is little room involved for overstepping one’s boundaries as your attorney in fact. In other words, it is often a better plan to have a solid durable power of attorney in place rather than to spring a durable power of attorney simply to help you bypass any lingering concerns you may have.

Are You Actually Incapacitated?

While you spring a durable power of attorney when you become incapacitated (if you have a springing power of attorney in place), this begs the question of how your incapacitation will be determined if the time does come. While your POA may specify that two physicians must sign off on your inability to make crucial decisions for yourself moving forward, this can lead to considerable delays in which no one will be in charge of the affairs addressed in your springing POA.

The fact is that it can take weeks –if not longer –to obtain the necessary certifications from two separate physicians. Often, incapacity is not black and white. For example, while an irreversible coma is a relatively easy call, the beginnings of dementia and other forms of slow decline are not. At the very least, the doctors making this pivotal determination will want to put in all necessary due diligence before deciding this magnitude.

Privacy Concerns

There is also the question of HIPAA (Health Insurance Accountability and Portability Act) violations to consider. Doctors are bound by HIPAA’s privacy constraints, which means there may be information they cannot share with your attorney in fact –unless your agent can prove authorization. This can create another layer of difficulty if you decide to spring a durable power of attorney –even if you take the additional precaution of creating and signing a release in conjunction with that POA document.

Trusting Your Agent

A springing POA is often implemented to bypass the concern that one’s attorney in fact will insinuate himself or herself into the position of decision-maker before his or her services are needed. This is based on the fact that, in a durable POA, the agent is authorized to assume the role of decision-maker from the moment the document is executed. The most important point to make if you are hesitant about creating a durable power of attorney is that you should not assign an agent unless you trust him or her implicitly. This kind of trust is non-negotiable and does not fluctuate. If you are on the fence about the person in question, he or she is not the agent for you. If you do not entirely trust someone as your agent for a durable power of attorney, he or she is probably not a good bet for a springing power of attorney either. In summation, opting for a springing a power of attorney can create more obstacles than it overcomes, and the peace of mind you think it might provide can be more illusory than anything else.

Discuss Your Concerns Regarding POA with an Experienced Estate Planning Attorney

Suppose you are wondering whether or not you should spring a durable power of attorney. In that case, it is an excellent time to reach out to the dedicated estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC in Texas. We have the experience, legal insight, and compassion to help you make the right decisions for yourself and your legacy. We are on your side, so please do not wait to contact or call us at 512-505-2753 today.

Selecting the Right Attorney-in-Fact for Your Medical Power of Attorney

Selecting the Right Attorney-in-Fact for Your Medical Power of Attorney

Selecting the Right Attorney-in-Fact for Your Medical Power of Attorney

Having a medical power of attorney in Texas is an important matter that should be given the careful consideration it deserves. Your medical power of attorney (medical POA) is a legal document that you –as the principal and as a competent adult –sign in order to designate someone whom you trust to make decisions about your health care in the event that you are unable to do so yourself. The person to whom you assign this important task is known as the agent –or the attorney-in-fact –of your medical power of attorney. Because choosing the right attorney-in-fact for your medical POA is a serious concern, the experienced estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC in Texas are well prepared to help you create a medical power of attorney that provides you with the peace of mind you are looking for. To learn more, please contact us today.

Attorney-in-Fact Defined

An attorney in fact is not necessarily an attorney at all (although he or she certainly can be). Instead, an attorney-in-fact is someone who is authorized to conduct the principal of the POA’s business, and when the written power of attorney is a medical power of attorney, this means that the attorney-in-fact will be making medical decisions on behalf of the principal.

Choosing Your Attorney-in-Fact

Choosing someone whom you trust implicitly is obviously critical when it comes to selecting the attorney-in-fact for your medical power of attorney. The basic attributes you are looking for include:

  • Someone whom you know to be trustworthy
  • Someone with whom you are comfortable working
  • Someone who thoroughly understands your wishes regarding medical care and is willing to carry them out

Additionally, while your attorney-in-fact must be at least 18 years old, you will want to choose someone who has the maturity to make difficult decisions in difficult situations, which generally calls for someone who has reached a greater age. Further, choosing someone who is close in proximity can help eliminate the additional complexities that come with distance. Another important factor is whether or not your attorney-in-fact has the time necessary to devote to making important medical decisions on your behalf in the event you need him or her to do so. Ultimately, you do not want the responsibilities inherent to being your attorney-in-fact for your medical POA to exceed the capacities of the person whom you choose. In other words, there are many important considerations regarding selecting the right attorney-in-fact for your medical power of attorney in Texas.

How Your Medical POA Works

Your medical power-of-attorney is only concerned with decisions that relate to your health care, and it should be written in exact accordance with your wishes and specifications. Your POA can address wide-ranging healthcare concerns, including:

  • Managing your personal care
  • Hiring a personal care assistant for you
  • Deciding which medical treatments you will receive
  • Making decisions regarding your overall health care

Your medical POA will be constrained by the parameters you include in the document and by all applicable legal restrictions. Those areas of medical care that may be subject to specific conditions can include:

  • The withdrawal of life-support systems
  • The withdrawal of fluids and nutrition
  • Medical treatment that is solely palliative (designed to provide physical comfort only)

Your Medical Power of Attorney

Your medical power of attorney, once carefully considered, written, and executed (signed) will need to be notarized. You should then provide your attorney-in-fact with the original (keeping a copy in a safe place). It is also important to distribute copies to all of the following that apply:

  • Your primary care doctor
  • Any specialists who regularly treat you
  • The medical facility where you receive medical care and treatment
  • Close family members whom you want to know your wishes
  • Your attorney
  • The administrator at the care facility where you live, such as a nursing home or an assisted living facility

Your medical power of attorney can be revoked by you at any time, and you can also designate a different attorney-in-fact at any time.

By Way of Example

Considering a common example is one of the best ways to better understand what it means to have a medical power of attorney and just how important selecting the right attorney-in-fact for you is.

Toward this end, let us consider the hypothetical example of Jen, whose father, John, is undergoing chemotherapy. While having a medical power of attorney is a good idea for everyone, it is especially important for anyone who is experiencing a serious illness. Jen thinks it is time to address the matter of a medical POA with her father, and the first order of business in this situation is to establish that John is physically and mentally well enough to understand the significance of creating a medical POA –and of selecting an attorney-in-fact –before creating the document.

John’s medical POA will outline all of John’s wishes regarding medical treatment moving forward (in the event that he is no longer able to do so on his own behalf). If Jen lives with her family across the country, she may not be a good choice for John’s attorney-in-fact, and John will need to carefully consider who the best choice is. Jen, however, can help John with the process of setting up his medical power of attorney, and the best way to ensure that it is legal and binding –and that it adequately addresses John’s wishes –is by working closely with an experienced Texas estate planning attorney, such as the attorneys at Ibekwe Law.

Reach Out To An Experienced Texas Estate Planning Attorney Today

If you have concerns regarding medical power of attorney in Texas –and about selecting the right attorney-in-fact for you –the dedicated estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC in Texas are here to help. The implications of choosing an attorney-in-fact are considerable, and a better understanding of exactly what is at stake can provide you with the peace of mind that comes from knowing you have given this important matter the careful consideration it deserves. We are on your side, so please do not wait to contact or call Ibekwe Law, PLLC at 512-505-2753 for more information about how we can help you today.
When to Seek a Financial Power of Attorney in Texas

When to Seek a Financial Power of Attorney in Texas

When to Seek a Financial Power of Attorney in Texas

When you think about a financial power of attorney, you might think that it is something for rich, old, or ill people. While this can be true, there is a lot more to the matter of financial power of attorney. A power of attorney (POA) is actually a flexible legal contract that allows the person who creates the document to transfer financial power for a specific task, for multiple specific tasks, or into the future (in the event of his or her incapacitation). In other words, a financial POA can be for a one-time event, for every financial matter, or for anything in between. The POA itself is an incredibly versatile document, and if you are interested in exploring the matter of financial power of attorney in Texas further, contact the dedicated estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC to learn more about how this legal document may help ensure your wishes are carried out.

Financial Power of Attorney: The Basics

Financial power of attorney might sound complicated –however, the basics are quite simple to understand. Consider the following:

  • A financial POA grants someone else the ability to make financial decisions on your behalf (within the parameters you set).
  • If you have a financial POA, you are its principal.
  • The person whom you assign to carry out financial duties on your behalf is known as the agent or the attorney-in-fact.

Do not let the legal terms frighten you away, your financial POA simply specifies whom you want to make financial decisions if the situation specified in the POA comes to pass.

Financial Peace of Mind

The most common reason for implementing a financial POA is to specify what should happen in the event of a medical emergency. If you are in the midst of the chaos of an emergency medical event, it is very likely that you will be incapable of attending to your regular financial needs, but the needs themselves will not disappear.

Your bills, mortgage, and financial accounts will remain active, and there will be payments and decisions that need to be made. You do not want a temporary setback to derail your financial future –and if the setback ends up being more than temporary –you do not want your family’s financial future to be derailed in the interim (while they tend to the grief associated with your incapacitation). When you have a financial POA in place that names a financially savvy agent whom you trust to manage your finances, it can provide you with the peace of mind you need to focus on recovering your health and well-being –without the nagging anxiety of tending to financial details.

How Your Financial Power of Attorney Works

Once your POA is executed (written, signed, and notarized), you will need to keep a copy in a safe place and provide your agent with the original. It is also a good idea to give a copy to everyone whom you want to know what your wishes are –your spouse and/or specific family members, for example. Your agent will present the financial POA to any third parties involved (your bank, for instance) when the time comes to exert his or her financial authority.

Powers of Attorney: Beginnings and Endings

Powers of attorney generally go into effect either immediately upon execution or upon some future event that is specified in the POA (often referred to as springing power of attorney –because of the way it springs into action when the precipitating event happens). The most commonly cited event that springs power of attorney into effect is if the principal becomes incapacitated, which means that one or more physicians certify that he or she is either mentally or physically incapable of making important financial decisions going forward. Common causes include:

  • Being in a coma
  • Suffering from debilitating dementia
  • Being unable to communicate

One’s POA automatically ends when the principal dies. Only a durable power of attorney extends beyond one’s incapacitation, which is why most financial powers of attorney are durable (unless they are specifically set up for making financial decisions in your absence –or in other discrete financial instances). The authority granted by a financial POA also ends in the following situations:

  • The principal revokes the authority granted.
  • A court invalidates the authority granted.
  • The agent is no longer able to do the job, and there is no alternative or successor agent assigned.
  • The agent and principal are spouses, and they divorce.

Authority Granted to Those with Financial Powers of Attorney

Those who have a financial power of attorney in Texas can be granted the authority to address all of the following matters:

  • Accessing your safe deposit box
  • Attending to your business operations, such as running your small business
  • Making gifts to charities or individuals in your name
  • Managing government benefits, including Medicare, Social Security, and unemployment compensation
  • Addressing any legal claims and litigation you are involved in
  • Attending to your tax matters
  • Managing your retirement accounts
  • Dealing with transactions that relate to banking and other financial institutions
  • Dealing with transactions that relate to estates, trusts, and other financial instruments with beneficiaries
  • Dealing with transactions that relate to insurance and annuities

The more complicated your financial situation, the greater your possible need for a financial power of attorney in Texas.

Learn More About the Creation of a Financial Power of Attorney in Texas

Having a well-considered financial power of attorney in place can provide you and your family with the peace of mind that comes from knowing you have taken the time and care necessary to help protect your finances into the future. The trusted estate planning attorneys at Ibekwe Law, PLLC in Texas are well prepared to help you execute a financial power of attorney that addresses your financial needs in the unlikely event that you become incapacitated. We are here to answer your questions and to help, so please do not hesitate to contact or call us at 512-505-2753 for more information today.