A Northern Michigan power of attorney lawyer provides you with assistance in choosing an agent who will act on your behalf in case of incapacity. Your agent has a fundamentally important role to play in protecting your autonomy as much as possible even if you can no longer speak for yourself. An experienced attorney will explain what an agent does and how you can ensure the agent you select is the right person for the role.
Biddinger, Bitzer & Estelle has helped many clients of all ages and in all life circumstances to create a power of attorney and to select an agent who will honor their wishes and make the right decisions on their behalf. The following are some of the key ways that our legal team helps you to choose the person who will act on your behalf when you no longer can act on your own.
Explaining the Role of an Agent
When you create a power of attorney (POA), you get to name an agent and give that agent certain authority to act on your behalf. You could give the agent only limited authority- such as to sign your name on a contract if you’ll be out of town when a transaction must close.
You could also give the agent general authority to make decisions, manage assets and act on your behalf. If you want to use a POA to ensure that a trusted person acts for you in managing your affairs if illness or injury prevent you from acting on your own accord, you should create a general power of attorney and give the agent an expansive role in making your decisions.
You could also consider the creation of a healthcare power of attorney, which involves specifically designating a chosen agent who can make care choices for you if you cannot approve or deny care and if you do not have advanced directives that dictate whether a specific kind of care should be received.
Helping you to Understand the Duties of an Agent
The agent that you select will have a fiduciary duty to you. This is the highest duty under the law. This means in every decision that an agent makes and every transaction an agent enters into, the agent must act on your behalf and do what is best for you.
You can talk with the person you are choosing as an agent as you create your power of attorney to ensure that the person you select is on the same page and can be trusted with making decisions you’d likely believe are the right ones.
Assisting with the Creation of your Power of Attorney
When you have decided who you want to be your agent based on a clear understanding of what agents do and what their obligations are, Biddinger, Bitzer & Estelle will help you create a legally valid power of attorney.
If you are using your POA for incapacity planning, it is important to ensure that it is a durable power of attorney. This means it stays in effect in case you become incapacitated; otherwise your agent would lose authority right when he or she needs it to help manage your assets and make your decisions in case of incapacity.
When using a power of attorney to name an agent to manage your affairs in the event of incapacity, it is also important to make your grant of authority a general one. Creating a limited POA would give your agent only the authority you specifically delegated. This could result in your agent not being able to do what is necessary to act for you once illness or injury stops you acting on your own.
Biddinger, Bitzer & Estelle will work with you to make sure you include the right language and clauses when you create your POA. When you get help from our firm, a Northern Michigan power of attorney lawyer will take care of creating the formal paperwork for you and ensuring you comply with state law so there is no question as to the POA’s validity.
Get Help Today from a Northern Michigan Power of Attorney Lawyer
A Northern Michigan power of attorney lawyer will work with you to determine if a power of attorney is the best choice of legal tools to plan ahead in case of incapacity. If you decide that a POA is right for you, our legal team can assist you in understanding what an agent does, selecting your agent, and delegating authority to that agent under the appropriate circumstances.
To find out more about how our legal team can assist you, give us a call at (989) 872-5601 or contact us online today to talk with an experienced member of our legal team.