Many Tampa residents strategize for what will happen after their deaths through estate planning. They may prepare wills and trusts, set up payable on death accounts and retitle property, and take other actions to maximize their abilities to bequeath their assets to their loved ones. Not as many people think about how their lives will keep moving forward if they are incapacitated and unable to act on their own behalf.
Planning for incapacitation is difficult but possible with powers of attorney. This post will explore what can be accomplished through powers of attorney, but no part of this post should be used or read as legal advice. All Florida residents with questions about powers of attorney can discuss them with their trusted Tampa-based estate planning and probate lawyers.
What powers of attorney can do
There are many ends that powers of attorney can accomplish. Primarily, they are used to grant authority and power to named individuals to make financial and healthcare decisions for the incapacitated. For example, a person with power of attorney to make healthcare decisions can elect to keep a person on life support, choose their treatment paths, and other important healthcare decisions for the incapacitated individual who granted them those rights.
Powers of attorney can be made as broad or specific as their drafters wish. For example, a person may only want to allow another person to manage their bills and finances if they cannot on their own, and may wish to allow another estate planning tool to dictate how their medical care will be provided.
Preparing powers of attorney before they are necessary
One of the most difficult parts of preparing a power of attorney device is starting it. No one wants to think about a life-threatening accident or illness incapacitating them, and therefore these important testamentary documents are sometimes overlooked in the greater estate planning process. Therefore, it can be hard to talk about them with relatives and loved ones who do not have them.
Estate planning will look different for every Floridian. However, every Floridian has the option to choose to use powers of attorney in their plans. Dedicated legal representatives can assist their clients with these and other sensitive estate planning matters.