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In cases of incapacity power of attorney plays important role

On Behalf of | May 22, 2015 | Estate Planning

If you have been named as an attorney for property over the financial matters of a loved one you may be wondering just what your role is. While the specifics of each situation will of course determine exactly what needs to be attended to, there are some general guidelines that all should keep in mind.

The first is that the appropriateness and suitability of the financial transactions you engaged in as an attorney for property could be scrutinized. You may be asked to provide an accounting of transactions to other interested parties such as Public Guardian and Trustee or beneficiaries of the estate. In response you must fully disclose the transactions you made while acting under power of attorney.

Next, even though you have been named as an attorney for property, it does not mean that you can do whatever you want to. Where financial matters are concerned you are obligated to act in the best interest of the person you are making decisions for. This means that if for example, that person regularly does things with his of her money that make fiscal sense–such as donate to a charity–you should not change those donations.

Acting as a the power of attorney for another person can be a complicated. Such undertaking means that it is important that there is a good amount of thought put into deciding, who will be selected. If someone fails to name a person to act as an attorney for property and then becomes incapacitated, a family member or friend may need to go to court to seek guardianship. When a power of attorney is named that process can be avoided and the incapacitated person has had a say in who is responsible for making the decisions.

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