If you’re using a power of attorney to choose an agent who can make decisions for you, it’s important to know that there are different types of powers of attorney. For example, you can use a legal power of attorney or a medical power of attorney. One can address financial and legal issues, while the other one addresses health issues.
These can be very different tasks, although the legal obligation to make decisions for you is similar. Should you choose the same person to be your agent in both cases, or would you be better off choosing different people for each power of attorney?
Finding the right person
First and foremost, it is very important to have the right individual in that role. They need to understand your position, they need to fully grasp complex topics, they need to be willing to assist you in potentially difficult ways and it is often good for them to be near you so that they can respond quickly. In some cases, people will pick the same person for both powers of attorney simply because only one person is going to have all of the qualities they are looking for.
That being said, you may want to think about how complex the situation is going to be. If there are a lot of medical decisions to make during a stressful time, do you want that person to have to think about legal and financial decisions as well? Or would it be easier for them to just focus on your medical situation while allowing someone else to think about the legal side?
You can set your estate plan up to meet your needs, but you just need to know what steps to take and what options you have.