How to Get a Power of Attorney for My Elderly Parents in Florida?
If you have noticed that your aging parents are losing their ability to make decisions regarding their healthcare or finances on their own, you may want to consider getting a power of attorney.
A power of attorney allows the principal (an elderly parent) to empower someone they trust (their child) to make decisions concerning their medical care, property, finances, and investments on their behalf if they become incapacitated.
If you are thinking about getting a power of attorney for your elderly parents in Florida, it is vital to consult with a Florida estate planning lawyer to help you make sure that the document is well-drafted and valid.
How to get a power of attorney for your parents in Florida?
If possible, it’s essential to get a power of attorney while your elderly parents are still of sound mind and capable of making legal decisions. You will need to talk to your parents and explain to them the benefits of having a power of attorney as well as the risks of not having this legal document in the event of incapacity.
If your elderly parent was incapacitated before you had a chance to get a power of attorney, you might still be able to make decisions on their behalf through a guardianship proceeding.
When getting a power of attorney for your aging parent, it is important to write down all of their wishes. Ask them questions regarding medical care, property, investments, and finances, and be as specific as possible.
What you need to know about a power of attorney in Florida
When getting a power of attorney for your elderly parent in Florida, you need to clearly state who will serve as the agent. Also, alternate agents are highly encouraged in the event something happens to the first named attorney-in-fact.
It is not uncommon for multiple family members – for example, an elderly parent’s children – to split power of attorney and serve as co-agents. This can be done when all legal requirements are met. It is very important that you co-agents generally get along and will agree on most issues.
When the principal wants to give you or someone else a springing power of attorney, the legal document should clearly identify the event that would “spring” the power into action. Unlike a durable power of attorney, which becomes effective immediately after signing, a springing power of attorney does not become effective until a doctor certifies that the principal is no longer able to make decisions on their own. In Florida, powers of attorney are “durable” and not “springing” powers.
In most cases, elderly parents grant their children a power of attorney for the rest of their lives, but there are times when the principal wants a power of attorney to terminate after a certain amount of time. For this reason, the document should outline how long a power of attorney would last.
Once you have prepared and filled out all the forms, your elderly parents have to sign a power of attorney. When signing the document, it is advised to consult with an experienced attorney. Contact our attorneys at Legacy Protection Lawyers, LLP, to discuss how to get a power of attorney for your loved ones. Call at 727-471-5868 for a consultation.