Although no one can predict the future with any certainty, each of us can take steps to ensure that loved ones will have clear direction if incapacity occurs. A durable power of attorney can provide this peace of mind. A durable power of attorney, as with any estate planning instrument, must comply with several requirements to be legally effective. Experienced legal counsel can tailor these documents to an individual's needs while complying with applicable laws.
At Stern, Keilty & Wall, LLC, our lawyers can walk you through the requirements for durable powers of attorney. Serving clients throughout Eastern Massachusetts and the North Shore, in places like Beverly, Salem and Peabody, our estate planning lawyers have substantial experience preparing these and other estate planning instruments. We will work with you to ensure that all your financial and health care decisions will be carried out as you direct.
What Can A Durable Power Of Attorney And Health Care Proxy Do For Me And My Family?
If you suddenly become unable to make decisions and manage your financial affairs and do not have a durable power of attorney, your loved ones will not have the legal authority to make these decisions. As a result, your family may have to go through the guardianship and/or conservatorship process at the probate court to obtain this authority. The guardianship and/or conservatorship process is not only costly and time-consuming but can also potentially create strife among family members as to who should make these decisions. A durable power of attorney allows you to designate legal authority to a trusted person who can:
- Manage your financial accounts and investments
- Manage your real estate and/or small business
- Pay your bills
- Make important financial planning decisions
A health care proxy allows you to designate legal authority to a trusted person who can:
- Make medical treatment decisions for you
- Agree or deny authority to the administration of medications
- Admit you to a hospital, assisted living or nursing facility
- Communicate end-of-life health care decisions on your behalf
Determining who should have the legal authority to make decisions involving your medical care, real property and personal financial affairs is a critical decision. This person should be someone you trust a great deal. Our law firm can help you consider exactly what authority you want to grant this person and under what circumstances he or she should assume this authority.
Contact Stern, Keilty & Wall, LLC
At Stern, Keilty & Wall, LLC, we offer a blend of estate planning, elder law, disability law, real estate law, and estate administration that provides support and counsel to clients along the continuum of lifetime planning.
We are located in historic Downtown Salem. Call 978-219-9932 or complete our contact form to schedule a consultation. We offer evening and weekend appointments by request. We can also arrange off-site appointments for those unable to travel or in emergency situations.