New Orleans Personal Injury Attorney | Law Offices of L. Clayton Burgess

Power of Attorney – Meaning, Key Roles & Challenges

A power of attorney is a legal document that allows some other person to decide on your behalf. In case you are no longer incapable of making decisions, this power comes into act. The legal authority is given to the agent to make property, financial, and medical care decisions of the principal. A personal injury attorney in New Orleans, LA assists the principal in taking actions against the agents when the latter misuses the power.

Situations when power of attorney comes into effect:

  • When an individual is hospitalized and chooses someone to carry on with the regular activities on your behalf
  • When an individual loses the power to make proper decisions

Types of Power of Attorney

  • Ordinary Power of Attorney (OPA)

OPA comes into effect when you are physically unstable for a short period. It could be due to a hospital stay or a holiday. The principal gives the authorities to the agent to look after the financial affairs.

  • Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)

The LPA covers issues related to finance or health. For instance, if you lose your mental stability and no longer can make decisions on your own, LPA comes into effect. There are two types of LPA–

  • LPA for financial decisions:
  • Buying and selling of properties
  • Investments
  • Paying bills
  • Paying the mortgage
  • Repairing of properties
  • LPA for health care decisions:
  • Residence
  • Medical care
  • Diet plan
  • Person of contact
  • Social activities
  • Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA)

If you lose your mental capacity and require someone to take care of your financial and property affairs, then EPA comes into validation.

Risks Involved In the Power Of Attorney 

The risk of appointing a power of attorney is more significant than its convenience. Sometimes agents are given undue power to act on behalf of the principal, such as selling a property, business operations, altering beneficiary designations, modification of a trust, and more.

It is difficult for the principal to hold the agent accountable for any wrongdoing after appointing him with such broadly classified powers. A Power of Attorney is governed by a contract and not by the court. Thus, there are certain limitations to this. Mainly it is concerned with the death of the principal, as the agent completely loses the power to act. If you are looking to learn more about the limitations of the Power of Attorney, you can consult a personal injury attorney in New Orleans for extensive guidance.

Individuals interested in establishing a power of attorney might seek the assistance of a lawyer. A personal injury attorney in New Orleans, LA can help you in framing the right legal document to protect yourself from unfortunate events.

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