Why Your Medical and Financial POAs Should be Separate
A Last Will and Testament cannot be used to handle your affairs if you experience a
mental disability. Medical and Financial Powers of Attorney (“POAs”) are necessary
documents for the creation of a solid estate plan. POAs allow you to name an agent to
make decisions for you if you become mentally disabled and to help you avoid a court-
Naming Different Agents
With each type of POA you must name an agent. For a Medical Power of Attorney, your
agent will handle your medical care including speaking with doctors for you and making
any necessary medical choices. Your medical agent must follow your preferences and do
what is best for you when making these life changing choices.
A Financial Power of Attorney allows you to name an agent to monitor your finances.
Because it is durable, it will continue to work even after you become disabled. You can
stipulate what control your agent will have over your finances. Financial agent duties
may range from depositing social security checks to investing your retirement funds.
If you feel your medical and financial agent should not be the same person, separate
agents can be named. Your financial agent will not have access to your medical
information and will not be able to make those decisions for you. Your medical agent can
focus on your medical care. This may be best, if you feel your medical agent would not
be able to handle your finances and make wise investment decisions.
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