What is a Power of Attorney?

When an individual thinks about the future, they often want to secure a trusted friend or family member to make decisions for them in the event that they no longer can do so for themselves. In order to legally appoint someone as your decision maker, you will have to complete a power of attorney. It is important to have someone close to you act as this representative because they will have authority to make a number of decisions regarding your finances and health. If someone you do not trust is granted power over your affairs, you may not like what they choose to do with it. In order to ensure that you are happy with important decisions made about your future and the future of your estate, preparing a comprehensive estate plan is essential. It is always important to be prepared for the unexpected and have a strong estate plan to protect yourself.

The person chosen to represent the power of attorney has a variety of different responsibilities, depending on what they have been designated responsible for in the document. Some of the authority that the chosen individual may be responsible for includes:

  • Paying the person’s bills
  • Buying and selling real estate and other property
  • Handling other financial matters such as deposits and withdrawals
  • Filing tax returns
  • Obtaining medical records and filing insurance claims
  • Hiring in-home caretakers to assist with medical needs

Of course, when you decide to create a power of attorney, you can choose what you’d like the representative to have decision-making power over. If you are unsure of what responsibilities the person of your choosing should have, you may want to consult with an experienced estate planning attorney.

The Radol Law Firm is proud to serve the people of New Jersey in their divorce and family law, elder law, estate planning, and bankruptcy matters. Contact our firm today to schedule a consultation.