Waters & Co. Lawyers can help you with the four types of Powers of Attorney used in Victoria:
- Enduring Power of Attorney (Financial), which is used to appoint someone to make legal and financial decisions for you in the event that you lose the capacity to make those decisions yourself.
- Enduring Power of Attorney (Medical Treatment), which is used to appoint someone to make medical treatment decisions on your behalf if you cannot make them yourself.
When should I make a Power of Attorney?
Before you need them! These documents safeguard your interests in the event of something unforeseen – an accident or illness that robs you of your capacity to make decisions for yourself. It is better to be prepared and confident in knowing that the person you choose will be making important decisions about your money, your living arrangements and your health.
When does it start?
For a Power of Attorney (Financial) it begins when you nominate that it should. Powers of Attorney (Medical Treatment) only commence when you are unable to make your own decisions.
Who should I appoint to be my Attorney or Guardian?
You need to appoint someone your trust to make the right decisions. With an Enduring Power of Attorney (Financial) you can appoint more than one person to make the decisions jointly.
What are the legal responsibilities of my Attorney?
They are legally responsible to you and must act in your best interests. While you have mental capacity they must obey your instructions. They cannot give gifts to themselves or to anyone else unless you specifically authorise this and they must keep their finances and money separate from yours, keeping accurate records of all of their dealings with your money.
Who should I talk to about it?
It’s really important that you discuss these documents with a lawyer who can give you professional advice about your particular circumstances. It’s also vital that you discuss your wishes with your family to avoid unnecessary conflict and stress.
Do I need a witness?
Yes, these documents need to be witnessed by a person with statutory authority such as a solicitor or Notary Public.
Can I change my mind?
Yes, as long as you still have the decision making capacity to do so you can revoke or change these documents. This has to be done in a legally binding way, however, so please seek legal advice.
Contact us to find out more or to arrange an appointment.