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  • Ross & Beckman, PLC.

Whom should I give my power of attorney?

When creating a trust or will, it’s imperative for you to appoint a power of attorney should you become incapacitated. A power of attorney appoints someone as an agent, otherwise known as an attorney-in-fact, to make legal decisions on behalf of someone else. There are many types of powers of attorney, like a durable power of attorney and a financial power of attorney.

Selecting someone to serve with your power of attorney isn’t a task to take lightly. There are certain characteristics to look for to ensure they are the right person for the job.


Competence

A good attorney-in-fact possesses knowledge of the applicable financial matters or medical processes. If they have no idea what they’re doing, that could put your health or funds in jeopardy.


Willingness to be your power of attorney

Making important decisions for another person is time-consuming and challenging. When choosing someone to give your power of attorney, make sure that the individual in question wants to serve you. The last thing you need is a reluctant agent, which creates a lose-lose situation.

Trustworthiness

Since they will be making decisions on your behalf, you need to scrutinize their values and character. Conduct background checks or try to find any information about them online. If a prospective agent happens to be a family member, be selective with them, too. Just because you’re related to someone doesn’t mean you can automatically trust them.


Assertiveness

One of the toughest aspects of holding a power of attorney is dealing with pressure from relatives or other parties regarding upholding your wishes. They need to stick with their convictions, even if it means receiving criticism.


An honest and skilled power of attorney is necessary for your estate plan. If you have any questions about appointing a power of attorney for yourself or a loved one, please reach out to experienced legal guidance for assistance.



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