Why you need a Power of Attorney
Why You Should Create a Power of Attorney Now!
Should you lack the capacity to make decisions, and no enduring power of attorney is in place, it will be impossible for you to designate someone to manage your financial and personal affairs. This could result in an individual you are not fond of, or even a complete stranger taking charge of your decisions.
Thus, it is essential to recognize what a power of attorney entails and why you should create one now, as you never know what the future holds.
What is a Power of Attorney?
Considering the authority of your chosen power of attorney over your matters and any possibility they may not always act in your favor, it is understandable that one would wonder what the benefit of setting up a power of attorney is.
In the case that you do not possess a power of attorney and become unable to make decisions for yourself, no one will have the necessary legal authority to take care of your financial affairs. With regards to health-related matters, the law allows some people to be named as “statutory health attorney”; however, this might not be someone you would like having control over your health care decisions. You may also want to create certainty with your family members as to who should be responsible for what decisions, and less the risk of family disputes over decision making, which could hinder the decision making process and that would impact you, your finances and your health, and why would you want to risk that?
If you fail to appoint a Power of Attorney
Failing to create a power of attorney means that an application must be made to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) in order for them to appoint someone to handle financial or healthcare decisions. These persons may not necessarily be people with whom you would want making choices on your behalf. A law firm, trustee company, or other entity could be chosen, who would charge you considerable fees to do the job. And what’s worse, you would have a stranger appointed to make decisions about your life. You don’t let strangers decide for you now, so why let a stranger make important decisions for you when you are at your most vulnerable, and have to pay them for it too?
Applying to VCAT
Applying to VCAT can be a source of pressure and stress for those close to you. Supporting documents must be compiled, including medical reports, before appearing in the tribunal. To help with this procedure, people may wish to acquire legal advice; however, this would cost considerably more than a power of attorney would. Such costs will most fall on you as well.
During the VCAT proceedings, a certain amount of time may pass in which no one will be able to do anything on your behalf, and this could be damaging for you, and destressing for those who care about you.
A Power of Attorney is an inexpensive and underrated tool
Establishing a power of attorney beforehand can be beneficial for everybody involved. Doing this correctly will not only lessen the worry associated with making an application to VCAT, but also save costs and time, as well as prevent any dispute regarding who will make decisions on your behalf. Most importantly, it establishes what exactly you would like to happen in a way that is viewable by all.
The HazeLegal team is available to answer any queries you might have about power of attorneys, or can help you draft one. Don’t hesitate to get in touch for assistance with the process. We also offer fixed fees, so you know what it will cost before you even get started, no nasty hidden surprises.