What is a Health Care Power of Attorney?
A Health Care Power of Attorney is a document in which you name a person, known as a health care agent, to make medical decisions on your behalf in the event you cannot make such decision on your own.
A health care power of attorney is an important estate planning tool, as it ensures that someone is able to make important medical decisions on your behalf if you cannot do so yourself.
In your Health Care Power of Attorney, you grant your agent very broad powers to make decisions regarding your medical care. For example, your agent could potentially choose which doctor will treat you, or consent to or decline medical procedures on your behalf.
How Do I Select My Agent?
Typically, you will designate one agent to act under your Health Care Power of Attorney, and will then name successor agents to act in the event that your primary agent is unable or unwilling to make decision on your behalf.
Given the broad powers your health care agent will possess, it is important to choose someone you trust to make decisions that are in your best interest.
Some factors to consider when designating your agent could be:
- personality traits
- family and relationship dynamics
- the age and health of your health care agent
- your agent’s geographic location.
Additionally, you should always discuss your wishes concerning your health care, including life prolonging measures, mental health treatment, and long term care plans with your health care agent.
The lawyers at Perry, Bundy, Plyler and Long LLP can discuss these considerations with you in relation to your specific situation, and can work with you to select the best health care agent for you. Give us a call at 704-289-2519 to discuss your estate planning wishes and protect your interests in the event that you can no longer make medical decisions for yourself.