Tag Archive for: Power of Attorney

If you are considering a power of attorney for elderly parents, you are most likely balancing your concerns for your parents against the concern for granting someone a power of attorney. If you are a child of elderly parents, you may be wondering what exactly is expected in the role of power of attorney. In any case, our firm can assist you in navigating the concerns surrounding a power of attorney, and assist in drafting estate planning documents as well.

There are primarily two power of attorney documents which you should consider for elderly parents in North Carolina. The first is a healthcare power of attorney, and the second is a financial power of attorney.

Healthcare Power of Attorney For Elderly Parents

A healthcare power of attorney appoints an individual to assist in making healthcare decisions for an individual in the event the individual cannot communicate their wishes to doctors and medical facilities on their own. It’s important that the power of attorney is executed prior to the elderly individual losing the capacity to sign such a document which grants authority over healthcare decisions.

The standard North Carolina power of attorney also contains specific provisions regarding healthcare treatment under common healthcare scenarios. This gives the individual granting the power of attorney to make some of their healthcare wishes directly known via the power of attorney document. The remainder of decision-making will be done by the appointed healthcare power of attorney, in conjunction with the tending physicians.

A healthcare power of attorney in North Carolina is only implemented when the individual requiring healthcare cannot communicate their decisions to doctors on their own; however, as pointed out previously, the document must be signed at a time when the individual has full signing capacity including the ability to understand the effect of the power of attorney being signed into existence.

Financial or Durable Power of Attorney for Elderly Parents

The second type of power of attorney most commonly used in North Carolina is a financial power of attorney. This document is similar to the healthcare power of attorney except that it governs the ability of another individual to manage finances for someone. One distinction between the financial and healthcare power of attorney is that the financial power of attorney, once signed, gives the named agent the power to access and manage finances ongoing. This is true whether the individual who granted the power of attorney has the capacity to manage them on their own or not.

A financial or durable power of attorney continues to be effective once the individual who granted it is deemed to be incapacitated. This, in fact, is when it is most important to have in place. As you can imagine, if an elderly parent is unable to take care of finances, they will then rely on the named agent to do so in their place.

Additional Resources

For more information regarding the drafting of or implementation of power of attorney documents, you can reach out to our firm for a free consultation. Our job is to answer questions for both the individual granting the power of attorney, and the individuals who may serve as power of attorney for them. If you would like to read a slightly more in-depth article about power of attorney options, check out A Guide to Power of Attorney for Elderly Parents, which we find to be a great resource from caring.com

You can reach us at 704.749.7747, or click HERE to request a consultation regarding a power of attorney for elderly parents.

An Affordable Estate Plan

We believe everyone deserves an affordable estate plan. If you have minor children, you absolutely need one. Too often, clients are pressured into expensive and complicated trust vehicles designed for tax savings that benefit the wealthy. What most of us need is a Simple Will, Power of Attorney, and a Living Will. We proudly offer an affordable estate plan to clients in Charlotte and the surrounding area.

What Is A Simple Will?

Your will is the document that dictates your wishes upon your death. Specifically, it gives you a chance to direct the treatment of certain assets—your home, your belongings, and the remainder or “residual” of your estate. The will also give you a chance to detail your burial wishes and make other special requests.

While protecting your assets from being administered by a statutory process, the will also is your chance to clearly lay out your wishes. The importance of this cannot be overstated. By doing so, you give the family clear direction as to the disposal of your assets and minimize any confusion among surviving siblings or children as to “who gets what”.

Your will also gives you the chance to name a guardian for your minor children in the event you pass away before your children reach an age of majority. If you are married, this is only necessary if both parents pass away– our affordable estate plan addresses that. You also have an opportunity to name a trustee to look after the assets of your estate if your children are minors when you pass. This way, your minor children do not have full access to the assets until an age that you determine is appropriate.

It’s important that your Will follow the rules for execution in North Carolina, which are defined in the North Carolina General Statutes. In order to have a valid will, you must meet these requirements. Our office can assure you that your estate plan will be valid and recognized in North Carolina.

Healthcare Power of Attorney

Our estate plan also includes a healthcare Power Of attorney. This document names someone to make healthcare decisions for you if you’re unable to do so yourself. This document is invaluable if your health declines and you can’t communicate with doctors and healthcare facilities. It enables those same doctors and facilities to administer care by considering the voice of your healthcare agent, who you will name in your healthcare power of attorney.

Living Will

Often confused with a will, your living will is a document that clearly communicates to doctors and healthcare professionals what your desires are regarding treatment under certain circumstances. If you are terminal and incurable, or in a persistent vegetative state, this document is your authority to withhold certain treatment. Without it, healthcare professionals strongly hesitate to withhold care for fear of liability.

Family members often are placed in a difficult position if they don’t have a living will. During a time of crisis, this document allows the family and doctors to clearly be made aware of your wishes regarding treatment like extraordinary measures and artificial nutrition and hydration (Commonly referred to as “tube feeding”).

Financial Power Of Attorney

Lastly, your estate plan includes a financial power of attorney. This document names an individual who can handle your finances in the event you are unable to do so for yourself. This empowers the family to fund healthcare from your accounts and also to carry on your ongoing financial business during a time when you’re unable to do so for health reasons.

It’s Easy To Get Started

Obtaining an estate plan through our office is easy. There is a questionnaire you fill out, which asks basic questions regarding who you would like to name to take care of your health and financial matters if you can’t do it. It also asks if you have any specific wishes to be carried out through your will.

You do not need to turn over a ton of paperwork or financials in order to obtain an affordable estate plan. If you need advanced estate planning down the road for tax purposes, we can assist with that when the time is right.

Speak With A Charlotte Attorney Today

If you would like to speak with an attorney about getting your affordable estate plan done, call us. The consultation is free. You can call 704.749.7747 or click to request a FREE CONSULTATION.