Do you have someone appointed to handle your finances in the event that you are unable to do so for yourself? Most people consider who they want to leave their assets to after they die but what about while you are still alive? Illnesses, accidents and the effects of aging are around us every day and they can be incapacitating.
You should consider a Durable Power of Attorney for Finances. This document provides for someone to act on your behalf in money matters in case you are incapacitated. You can give this person as much or as little power as you would like. In most cases, he or she is granted power to manage your expenses and pay your bills. Some other powers that you can grant to your agent include:
- Hire or fire attorneys, nurses, caretakers
- Make legal claims on your behalf
- Invest your money
- Run your business
- Buy, rent and sell real estate
Regardless of how much power you want this person to have, they should be someone you trust with absolute confidence. If you become incapacitated, they will have control over your assets and work without a lot of oversight. When choosing a Durable Power of Attorney for Finances, ask yourself a couple of questions.
- Can I trust this person with a blank check?
- Am I comfortable talking about my financial affairs with this person?
- Does this person have personal financial stability?
With all of that being said, it is important to note that you can revoke the Durable Power of Attorney if you ever become dissatisfied. It is important to review all of your estate documents every three years or so because as time goes on, your preferences may change. Keeping these documents up to date and accurate is very important.
Need more information on end of life planning? Check out ForeTalk – a complete and simplified guide to prepare for one of every family’s most difficult times written and taught by Stan Craig HERE.
Check out our interview with Stan Craig where he goes into more detail about end of life planning HERE. You can listen to the Monday Money Tip Podcast HERE. While you’re here, make sure to subscribe and leave us a rating to let us know what you think!