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Powers of attorney may be a good next step for your estate plan

On Behalf of | Dec 22, 2021 | Blog |

Perhaps you created your last will and testament some years ago. Time passed, and you did not pursue other estate planning possibilities.

Now that you are nearing retirement, you want to consider the next step. If so, this may be a good time to establish your durable powers of attorney (POA).

Healthcare

The POA for healthcare will give the person you choose, your agent, the legal authority to make medical decisions on your behalf. This includes, among others, decisions regarding surgery, hospital care. which doctors you use, and home care or long-term care.

Finances

The financial POA allows your agent to have access to your bank, retirement and investment accounts. Your agent will take care of your daily financial obligations, such as paying your bills, filing your taxes and making investment decisions. He or she will also have the authority to manage your properties. Having a financial POA is also useful if you are still competent but need a trusted relative or friend to help manage your day-to-day financial affairs.

Precautions

As people age, some form of dementia becomes a concern. Keep in mind that you must be mentally competent to establish and sign durable powers of attorney. Without these important documents, your family must go to the trouble and expense of obtaining guardianship in order to help if you should become incapacitated and are unable to manage your healthcare or financial responsibilities. Since you are reaching the age of retirement, creating your powers of attorney now is an excellent next step on your estate planning journey.