You may come to a point in your life where you deem it appropriate and beneficial to consider appointing a power of attorney, or you may be thinking about helping a loved one to appoint a power of attorney. Doing so can be a great way to have peace of mind about the state of your loved one’s finances and health care in future years.
However, there are many common misconceptions held about power of attorneys, and before starting the process of appointing one, it is a good idea to learn more about how they work. The following are some of the most common myths regarding power of attorneys.
Appointing a power of attorney means that they can do anything they want with your assets
While the power of attorney can make the ultimate decision regarding your assets, they have legal obligations, known as fiduciary obligations, to act in the best possible interests of the person who they are acting on behalf of. Therefore, it would still be illegal to act in a selfish manner in regard to the management if the estate.
A power of attorney can be appointed when a person is mentally incompetent
When a person is declared mentally incompetent, they are not able to initiate any legal decisions, including appointing a power of attorney. This is why it is vital that a power of attorney is appointed while a person is still mentally competent.
If you are interested in appointing a power of attorney for yourself or you want to help a loved one do so, it is important to take swift action to start the process.