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Powers of Attorney and Advance Directives

A General Durable Power of Attorney, a Medical Durable Power of Attorney, and an Advance Directive are three of the most important estate planning documents every person should have in place.  These crucial documents ensure that your friends, family, and medical personnel will have adequate instructions to protect your assets, and provide you the treatment and assistance you desire and deserve.

A General Durable Power of Attorney allows you to appoint a person to serve as your attorney-in-fact. Your attorney-in-fact can be given broad, general powers to act on your behalf, and perform such tasks as signing checks, executing deeds and transfer titles. You can also limit the powers of your attorney-in-fact to be very specific, such as naming someone to act as your agent in a real estate transaction for the sole purpose of executing closing documents.

If you have been appointed as agent under a Durable Power of Attorney, click here to download our Guidelines for Agent Acting Under a General Durable Power of Attorney.

A Medical Durable Power of Attorney will ensure that your spouse, or any other person you appoint, is allowed to review your medical records and has the authority to hire and fire doctors, consent to surgery, and check you into or out of hospitals, nursing homes, or assisted living centers. You can also appoint a person or persons to receive information from medical personnel, but not make any decisions on your behalf.

An Advance Directive, or Living Will, is yet another effective estate planning tool that instructs your family members and health care providers regarding your decisions about artificial life support and artificial nutrition and hydration in the event you suffer from a terminal condition or you are in a persistently unconscious or vegetative state, with no hope of recovery.

Let the experienced attorneys at The Crosthwait Law Firm discuss with you regarding all aspects of these crucial estate planning documents, how they interact and compliment each other, and why such documents are so important to your overall estate plan.