6 Things to Consider When Choosing a Power of Attorney

When choosing a power of attorney, make sure they live close by, are trustworthy, and have knowledge about your conditions and medical terms.

A power of attorney’s role is somewhat similar to that of your professional healthcare representatives, but they are not the same. There are some key differences.

Getting a power of attorney is beneficial for your health as they will be the ones taking various medical decisions for you. Since an average person may not be aware of all the medical and health issues, a power of attorney will be of great help.

Power of Attorney vs. Health Care Proxy

There is not much difference between a power of attorney and a healthcare representative while talking about the activity. They both help you with your health concerns. Therefore, many people get the two confused.

However, a healthcare proxy will not have any lawyers involved when getting appointed. You just need to sign a document and have two witnesses in a hospital, who will declare an individual as your health care proxy.

However, if you wish to appoint a power of attorney, you need to get a lawyer involved and prepare legal documents, check the qualities of the power of attorney, and have all financial documents in order.

A Power Of Attorney’s Work

As mentioned earlier, the job of a power of attorney does not differ much from that of a healthcare representative. They look at your medical records and provide you with the necessary information that you need to stay healthy.

They are the ones who take necessary medical decisions for you. For example, if you are diabetic, you may undergo surgery to reduce the severity of your disease. However, whether or not you will undergo surgery will be decided by your power of attorney.

Do You Need a Power Of Attorney?

If you are someone who has ongoing health issues, you need a power of attorney. If you are someone who is very severely sick, there may be times when you cannot make decisions on your own because you may be too sick or feeble.

Even if you are not severely sick, you will need someone who understands the medical terms and the risks involved much better than you. So if you can, you must get a power of attorney.

How to Choose the Right Power of Attorney?

Generally, a power of attorney is someone you can rely on and trust during crucial times. Apart from that, you must consider some other factors when choosing a power of attorney.

1. They Must Live Close to You

The first and foremost trait of a power of attorney is that they must live close to you because you may need their help anytime.

If they live far away from you, it will take them a long time to get to you, and by then, you could suffer from something serious. So select an attorney who lives close to you.

2. They Must be Trustworthy

Trust is a big issue when it comes to selecting a power of attorney. You need someone who you can trust as you leave the decision-making to them.

Suppose you have fallen sick and you need a surgical procedure. Whether you finally go through that procedure will depend on the attorney’s decision. A single wrong or late decision could prove to be very dangerous in certain situations.

3. They Must Have Knowledge about Your Conditions

They need to understand your medical conditions. The power of attorney must be well aware of your medical conditions and the current treatments you are going through.

This will help make it easier for them to make decisions on your behalf. You also need to share all your medical and health issues with the power of attorney. If you do not share information with them, they won’t be able to help you.

They need to have a copy of your medical records and stay up-to-date with your medicines.

4. They Need to Understand Medical Terms

The power of attorney should have a good understanding of different medical terms. they may not be a medical professional; still, they need to have thorough knowledge about medical terms.

For instance, if you have some sort of bone disease, you might need to go through a surgery named vertebroplasty. This surgery does not give you a 100% chance of cure. It may also have some adverse side effects like disabling the nerves of your corresponding bone.

If your power of attorney is not aware of the risks, they may take an incorrect decision, leading to further trouble.

5. They Need to be Assertive

The power of attorney should be assertive instead of being passive. During your time of sickness, you might find your family saying one thing and your power of attorney saying another.

If your power of attorney is right, they should be able to uphold their position and withstand the pressure of your family members. They must not be influenced by others.

6. They Must be Willing to Serve

Being a power of attorney is not an easy task. It requires a lot of dedication and hard work. There are countless possibilities where the attorney can take advantage of the patient, but they must not do so and dedicate themselves to serving the patient.

Final Thoughts

A power of attorney is your benefactor, who is willing to help you when you cannot help yourself so you need to be extremely careful when choosing the power of attorney. 

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Posted - 05/13/2021