Pascagoula Estate Planning Law Firm Guides You Through the Power of Attorney Process
Helping you make arrangements for the future
Have you given any thought to what might happen if you were suddenly incapacitated and unable to manage your affairs? The function of a power of attorney is to appoint someone you trust to do it for you. At the law firm of Cumbest, Cumbest, Hunter & McCormick, we work with our clients to develop comprehensive estate plans that address who will manage their affairs and make decisions on their behalf.
What is a power of attorney and why might I need one?
A power of attorney (POA) document allows you to appoint a trusted person to serve as your agent or attorney in fact. This person manages your affairs if you become incapacitated and are unable to make decisions on your own. You need a power of attorney even if you are married, because your spouse cannot automatically sign legal or financial documents on your behalf. You can grant a power of attorney temporary or permanent authority. You dictate the actions you permit the person to take, and you can limit it to a single transaction or give the person general authority.
You can revoke a power of attorney through a written revocation form, which must be given to your agent and to the individuals and businesses the agent deals with on your behalf.
What are the different types of power of attorney?
There are different types of power of attorney available depending on the situation:
- Durable: A durable power of attorney becomes effective when a licensed medical doctor declares that you are no longer capable of making decisions on your own. For example, if you fell into a coma or were experiencing the advanced stages of dementia, the agent you appointed would take over signing documents for you and making the decisions you specified in your documents.
- Medical: A medical power of attorney gives your agent the authority to make healthcare decisions regarding treatments and medical facilities. Your documents outline the treatments you want performed and those you do not want.
- Limited: A limited POA covers specific financial transactions. It becomes void if the principal is incapacitated.
To be valid, the power of attorney form must be notarized.
What is the best way to make my healthcare wishes known in Mississippi?
Every person has the right to make personal decisions about healthcare. You also have the right to appoint someone to make healthcare decisions on your behalf and to carry out your wishes as you expressed them. A Mississippi advance healthcare directive addresses this. On a healthcare directive form, you list the treatment options you consent to have done and those you do not want performed, name your preferred doctors, healthcare providers and hospitals, and approve or refuse certain medications. You can also institute a do not resuscitate (DNR) order, direct the provision or withdrawal of artificial nutrition and hydration, and specify which pain relief methods you would like used. On the same document you can appoint a person to make medical decisions on your behalf and designate a physician to take primary responsibility for your healthcare.
After completing the form, you sign and date it with two witnesses and get the form notarized.
An advance healthcare directive is just one aspect of your plan. When you work with an experienced estate planning attorney from Cumbest, Cumbest, Hunter & McCormick, we help you develop a comprehensive plan that covers medical and financial planning, wills and trusts for your future needs.
Contact an experienced Mississippi law firm for power of attorney help and other arrangements for the future
You might feel healthy and strong today, but there may come a time when you need to rely upon someone you trust to make decisions for you. Our attorneys approach each person as an individual and design an estate plan that reflects personal requirements. Contact us online or call us at 866-461-1591 to schedule an appointment to discuss your case.