What is the purpose of a Power of Attorney? - AgingCare.com

What is the purpose of a Power of Attorney?

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Just new at this. What other legal stuff do we need? We're going to see a lawyer and I don't even know what to ask for?

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Also, once witnessed and signed, please give your Person designated as POA a copy. Have multiple copies notarized.
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Also, reference the legal tab at the top right corner of this site and read through and/or search "POA". Get the DPOA. DO NOT let attorney draw up a springing POA ; these are worthless and what my parents drew up. It has been nothing but a legal nightmare. I can make no decisions until it is invoked by 2 or more drs declaring in writing that my mom is incompetent or incapacitated...sounds easy when the medical paperwork diagnosis is dementia, delusions, hallucinatory, paranoia and spends 10 days in behavioral center with discharge requiring care....but yet drs would not declare incompetency in writing; therefore the POA could not be invoked legally because when she was "competent temporarily" which happens with dementia, the rights "spring back" to patient.

Because of dementia, we can't get a new POA drawn up.

Make sure your lawyer has elder law experience so he can properly advise you and prepare lasting and relevant documents.
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Jennifers that's a very good question! I'm assuming the hospital would go ahead and treat the person with whatever measures could save that person's life. For example, if a 95 year old person's heart stopped, they'd try to start it again. I saw that when I worked in a hospital as a ward secretary. Ten people in a room trying to pound on the chest of a very elderly woman to bring her back to life. That's why I made sure my folks both have had DNRs (do not resuscitate) orders signed by their doctors and on file. I have a copy with me at all times and the facility where my mom lives has one posted on her fridge, so that if paramedics come, they know not to try to bring her back.

Or they might put in a feeding tube, which a lot of people wouldn't want (my mom being one). That's why it's best to get all of those wishes discussed and put into paperwork that is always available in the case of an emergency.
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If no one has the healthcare proxy, then it will be up to the hospital. If they have a DNR, they will probably choose to respect it if no family member protests. In the past I found hospitals to be rather neutral about living wills. That was 20 years ago, though. I don't know if the same holds true today. One thing that seems consistent with time is that hospitals tend to be respectful of the wishes of the family when it comes to end of life care. The only major problem can be if the family is not of one mind.
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Thank you so much! Question: What happens in a hospital when decisions have to be made and no one has POA?
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There are different types of POA. The most common types are durable POA for finances and healthcare. The finance POA will allow one to act as an agent for the person in financial matters. This includes paying bills, signing checks, and filing taxes. Other exact responsibilities are outlined in the POA form itself. Sometimes the POA can act as the agent of the person on business and real estate transactions. Everything will be outlined on the legal document.

The healthcare POA will allow the agent to make medical decisions concerning the person's care. This is a very important POA. When setting it up, it is also important to get the final directives in order -- the living will and DNR orders if desired. This gives the POA orders to fall back on if needed.
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