3 things to know about a Power of Attorney

There are many documents you may include in your estate plan in California. One option is a power of attorney. However, there are a few different types, so you want to familiarize yourself with them before deciding on which one to go with for your estate plan.

Money Crashers explains that you want to be sure to choose a power of attorney that matches your needs. You also need to ensure that it covers you when you need it. This requires knowing a little about the types and how this legal document works.

General or limited

The first thing to know is a power of attorney can be general or limited. A general one is broad. It grants your agent, which is the person who acts on your behalf under the power of the document, to make any decisions for you. A limited power of attorney is specific. It grants your agent the authority to make decisions for a specific purpose.

Durable or non-durable

A durable power of attorney allows your agent to act on your behalf even if you become incapacitated. In contrast, a non-durable one ends if you become incapacitated. This is an important distinction because if you have a durable power of attorney, you also need something else in place to handle the duties of your agent if you become incapacitated.

Decision types

If you choose the limited option, then you need to choose the decision types you grant your agent. This may include child care, where the agent can make decisions about the care and guardianship of your minor children. It could be financial, which allows your agent to make decisions regarding your money. Another typical example is health care, which gives your agent the ability to make decisions for you about medical care.

Knowing how a power of attorney works and the different options is essential to get the most out of this document. When including it in your estate plan, make sure you consider all the options.

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