Knowing that a parent is facing health issues can be difficult for anyone. You and many other Louisiana residents may have wondered if your own parent would reach a point at which he or she could no longer make sound decisions, but a recent medical diagnosis may have made it clear that mental decline was in his or her future.
Though this news can be distressing, you feel ready to take over the care of your parent when the time comes. Of course, you want to make sure that your parent feels comfortable with you making important decisions and that you have the legal right to do so. As a result, discussing the idea of creating a power of attorney document may be wise.
A useful document
Some people may feel wary about appointing a power of attorney agent because they think it means they will lose control. However, that is not the case. As agent, you would have a fiduciary duty to act in the best interests of your parent and can only act in the scope of power that the document allows. Some other misconceptions to consider and discuss include the following:
- If you think your parent can sign a power of attorney document after significant mental decline, think again. Your parent must still have the mental capacity to make sound decisions when appointing an agent.
- You may also have the wrong idea if you think only one type of power of attorney exists. Your parent could appoint a general power of attorney, limited power of attorney or a durable power of attorney.
- Many people believe that they can find a power of attorney document online. While some options are available, online forms do not guarantee validation under specific state laws.
Unfortunately, it is easy to have the wrong information about important estate planning documents. When discussing the idea of appointing a power of attorney agent, it is vital that you and your parent have the facts.
In order to ensure that you do have the right information and that the document is created correctly, you may want to consult with an experienced attorney. This legal professional can provide you and your loved one with reliable and applicable information for your specific situation. Having this support may bring about a greater peace of mind for the future.