Choosing Power of Attorney is a Critical Estate Decision

Real Estate Agent with LONG & FOSTER


Choosing a Power of Attorney is a Critical Estate Decision

Who would you want handling your financial affairs if you are ever incapacitated?  Who would you want making medical decisions for you if you were unable to do so?  These are two questions CNN Money Magazine suggests asking yourself when planning a living will.

A living will is one form of an advanced directive that allows an individual to make his or her wishes known to potential caregivers in the event of becoming debilitated.

Designating a power of attorney provides an individual with a back-up plan if they are ever unable to make decisions for themselves.  This person can negotiate, enter into contracts, and settle matters for the person who has designated them.

While planning a living will it is important to designate both a durable power of attorney and a medical power of attorney.  A durable power of attorney can make decisions while you are still alive. This would be beneficial to elders, who perhaps due to senility are unable to continure making important financial decisions.  A medical power of attorney is there to help make choices pertaining to your medical treatment if you are unable to do so. This would include your desires regarding life-support matters.

Having each of these powers of attorney in place will help to elevate your family's stress during a difficult time. Without this important designation in place the court may be needed to intervene if the family  is unable to reach a unified verdict on what is best for you...which could prove to be costly.

Courtesy of Yvette Smith, Senior Real Estate Specialist® REALTOR®

Comments (9)

LaShawn Norden
Keller Williams Heritage Realty - Longwood, FL
REALTOR, (321) 377-0157, Your Real Estate Advocate in Central FL

Hi Yvette!How are you? I am so sorry that we couldn't meet up when you visited Florida...let's try harder next time! As far as your post, I can't agree more...have a POA is very important...I would advise anyone who is considering one to make sure to have it properly notarized...find out the rules for your State as they are different in varying States and can affect the validity of the POA.

Nov 03, 2008 01:15 PM
Bill Gassett
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Hopkinton, MA
Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate

I am glad I don't have to worry about this yet but it is good information none the less. You can never be too prepared when it comes to estate planning.

Nov 03, 2008 01:24 PM
Jennifer Fivelsdal
JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571 - Rhinebeck, NY
Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection

Yvette - This is a decision that should not be viewed lightly.  The problem is many fail to do this planning ahead of time.

Nov 03, 2008 11:27 PM
Greg Nino
RE/MAX Compass, formerly RE/MAX WHP - Houston, TX
Houston, Texas

Hey Yvette! I just subsribed to your blog! thank you, thank you, thank you for always being supportive of mine!

And YES, getting a poa is critical!

Nov 04, 2008 09:20 AM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

Yvette, Thanks for the post. Great tips. I agree  choosing  a POA is important .

Nov 04, 2008 11:11 PM
Ann Allen Hoover
RE/MAX Advantage South - Hoover, AL
CDPE SRES ASP e-PRO Realtor - Homes for Sale - AL

Hi Yvette!  It gives me much peace of mind to know that I have taken care of estate planning.  Great reminder for everyone!

Nov 05, 2008 01:10 AM
Yvette Smith
LONG & FOSTER - Williamsburg, VA
Realtor In Williamsburg VA, Homes for Sale

LaSHAWN - Good points, know the laws of your state...critical.

BILL - I thought so too, until I had children.  Then I thought it was important to do it.

JENNIFER - This is one thing that I haven't procrastinated about.

GREG - Thank you!!  I look forward to hearing from you!

GITA - Your welcome!

ANN - Indeed it is & I am glad that I've done it also!

Nov 06, 2008 06:24 AM
Kerry Lucasse
eXp Realty - Urban Nest Real Estate Group - Atlanta, GA
Your Urban Nest Atlanta Real Estate Consultant

Yvette, thanks for the post.  I think this is something that people often put "on the back burner" and choosing a POA  is critical.

Nov 11, 2008 02:48 PM
Yvette Smith
LONG & FOSTER - Williamsburg, VA
Realtor In Williamsburg VA, Homes for Sale


You're welcome!  I agree, I don't think it's something that's done by folks that are younger & well.  They take for granted that they won't need it until later.  It's best to do this sooner & get it done!

Nov 16, 2008 04:29 AM