Common tools used in estate planning include powers of attorney (POA) and health care advanced directives. These documents enable an individual to authorize trusted agents to make financial decisions and health care decisions on their behalf. Planning ahead can prevent confusion, disputes among loved ones, and relieve your family from the burden of decision-making during a time of crisis. Unexpected circumstances in life can happen at any age, so it is highly recommended that all adults prepare these documents.
Powers of Attorney
A Power of Attorney is a fiduciary relationship granting your designated agent the authority to act on your behalf and in your best interest for financial matters. There are different types of Powers of Attorney in Florida. One type is for those who are incapacitated due to mental or physical disabilities and cannot perform legal obligations temporarily or for the remainder of their life. For others, it is limited to a specified purpose, such as a real estate closing or paying bills. It may be time-limited or a permanent arrangement. In addition, a Power of Attorney is a helpful tool for persons out of the country or in the military when they are not available to make financial decisions. Choosing an agent that you trust helps to ensure that your wishes are followed.
A living will is a health care advanced directive that alleviates loved ones from making crucial medical decisions for you if you become incapacitated. A living will documents your preferences for health care to prevent confusion or conflict when your family is presented with tough choices. Some of the end-of-life decisions in a living will can include:
• Cardiopulmonary resuscitation
• Mechanical ventilation
• Tube feeding
• Blood transfusions
• Organ and tissue donations
• Comfort care measures
Health Care Surrogates
No one can predict when a medical emergency will occur. Being adequately and thoroughly prepared for all of life’s twists and turns will put your mind at ease. A health care surrogate document grants your designated agent the authority to act on your behalf for medical purposes. It goes into effect if you become suddenly or gradually incapacitated or unable to communicate with your medical professional. Choosing an agent is an important decision, as he or she will be your voice and your advocate if you cannot make your needs known. You may name a trusted family member or friend. In addition, you can name an alternate agent in case your agent is unable to fulfill the role.
Myers Law Group, P.A. has the experience you need and the results you want
Although many people avoid estate planning, there is great peace of mind to be had knowing that you have communicated the parameters of future decision-making. With a power of attorney and a health care surrogate in place, your loved ones can avoid the complexities of a guardianship proceeding if you should become incapacitated. At Myers Law Group, P.A., our advanced directive attorneys have over two decades of collective experience in estate planning. We understand the nuances of the Florida legal system regarding incapacitation and end-of-life matters. Our legal team strives to provide you with a customized plan that will fit your specific needs.
Contact Myers Law Group, P.A. at our DeLand, Florida office at 386-873-7835 to schedule an appointment to discuss your unique circumstances and your options. We counsel and represent clients in Volusia, Flagler, Seminole, and Orange Counties, Florida.
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