Powers of attorney are very useful documents because, in part, they offer people such a wide variety of options. There are numerous types of powers of attorney you can employ, each of which has its own positives and negatives. Here’s a quick list of the different types available.
Medical or financial.
Powers of attorney are usually differentiated by those that grant financial authority, or those that grant medical decision-making authority. Depending on your situation and desires, one or both may be made a part of your estate plan.
Limited or general.
The types of powers you convey will either be broadly based, known as general powers of attorney, or very specific, known as limited powers of attorney. When you want to impose limits you can make any restrictions you see fit. In other situations you may want to give your agents broad authority, but state law may require you to specifically address certain powers you wish to convey.
A durable power of attorney lasts when you are incapacitated. Non-durable powers are terminated immediately upon you losing the ability to make decisions. Durable powers continue and last until you recover and revoke them or until you die.
Many people use springing powers of attorney because they do not want to hand over decision-making authority until they become incapacitated. Springing powers only take effect upon specific conditions, such as incapacity. Until those conditions are met the agent has no authority to act.
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