Food for thought when selecting agents for healthcare, financial and personal decisions.
Your healthcare and financial powers of attorney contain nominations for someone to serve (known as an “agent”) in the event you are unable to make these decisions for yourself. These documents are an important part of an estate plan and can help you avoid costly and time consuming guardianship proceedings. Most persons select a spouse, child or their close relative as their agent without much thought of the persons ability to do the job.
However, when making these important selections you should take into consideration numerous factors in determining who the “best choice” will be.
Obvious signs that someone might not be appropriate are persons with emotional instability, personal financial problems, poor health or addiction issues. When considering who would be a fitting agent, consider if he or she will be an active listener and will consider all relevant opinions before making a decision. Will your agent be accessible when decisions have to be made? Will they be able to resolve family conflict when disagreements arise? These are only a few of the important issues you should consider. For more information see “How to Select an Attorney in Fact,” Legal Nature (2013) which can be found online at legalnature.com
For more than 30 years, Attorney Lee A. Drizin has practiced in the areas of estate planning, probate, trusts, guardianship and real estate matters representing clients throughout the state of Nevada.
Drizin Law is providing this information for educational purposes only. It should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion as to any specific facts or circumstances. This information is based on general principles of Nevada law at the time it was created and you should be aware laws frequently change. Moreover, the laws affecting you may differ depending on the circumstances. You should consult with a qualified attorney in your own state or jurisdiction concerning your particular situation. Review of this information does not create an attorney-client relationship.