You almost never know when you may become incapacitated before it happens. Be prepared to have your spouse or adult child manage your property matters in case you become incapacitated and cannot manage them yourself. You can appoint your spouse, son or daughter as an agent under the Power of Attorney for Property to handle your affairs, giving them authority to, for example, write and sign checks to pay bills, deal with brokerage accounts, access your safe deposit box, and even manage your income. A power of attorney will also allow your chosen agent to deal with Medicare or Social Security issues when cannot resolve them yourself.
Appointing an agent under the Power of Attorney for Property gives you the comfort and security knowing that someone whom you trust will be managing your real and personal property for your benefit in the event that you should become incapacitated. It also allows for your agent to take immediate action regarding your affairs and avoids a potential lengthy or bitter court process for the appointment of a guardian of your estate. Finally, a power of attorney is not irrevocable. As life continues to change for you, you can change your Power of Attorney for Property to fit your needs up until such a time as you no longer have capacity.
The estate planning attorneys have been advising clients for many years about the need for an agent under the Power of Attorney for Property. The attorneys at Spesia & Ayers have experience in protracted litigation regarding agents and guardians, so they know how to guide clients through the process to prevent possible conflict situations. Our attorneys also work with the client to make sure that the provisions of their Power of Attorney for Property reflect their goals and needs regarding estate planning, thus ensuring that in the event of their incapacity the agent has all necessary authority to take any actions necessary to protect and provide for the client.