Most of your estate plan will focus on what happens to your property after your death. However, a thorough estate plan should also protect you in the event of a medical emergency. A workplace fall, a seizure or a cardiac event could leave you in a coma and unable to communicate with anyone.
In this scenario, you would be very vulnerable. Adding custom powers of attorney to your estate plan will help protect you if you cannot speak for yourself. How will powers of attorney benefit you in the event of your medical incapacitation?
Financial power of attorney
Regardless of how serious your emergency is, your creditors are unlikely to extend you much leniency for late or missed payments. Drafting a financial power of attorney now will ensure that someone you trust has the authority to pay your bills or manage your business.
Their right to access your accounts and make financial decisions on your behalf could protect you from major money issues after you recover from your incapacitation.
A medical power of attorney
You may belong to a religion that restricts your medical care, or you may have deep-seated personal feelings about matters like life support and pain management. Drafting a medical power of attorney allows you to give another person the authority to make medical decisions on your behalf.
You can combine those documents with an advance directive that discusses your medical preferences. Having someone with information about your wishes and authority to act on them will protect you from receiving inappropriate or inadequate medical care.
Learning how power of attorney documents can protect you might inspire you to finally create one for yourself.