An enduring power of attorney is a crucial legal document that gives someone else the legal authority to make financial decisions on your behalf in the event that you are unable to do so yourself. This document is important because it allows you to plan ahead and ensure that your wishes are carried out, even if you are no longer able to communicate them.
How does an Enduring Power of Attorney differ from an Enduring Guardian?
In NSW, Australia, there are two types of enduring legal documents that can be put in place to protect your interests if you become unable to make decisions for yourself: enduring power of attorney and enduring guardian. While both documents offer protection, there are some key differences between them.
An enduring power of attorney is a document that gives someone else the authority to make financial decisions on your behalf. An enduring guardian, on the other hand, is a person who is appointed to make medical and personal care decisions for you in the event that you are no longer able to do so yourself. So, if you were to become incapacitated and needed someone to manage your finances, an enduring power of attorney would be the appropriate document to put in place.
What should I consider when choosing someone to be an Enduring Power of Attorney?
When choosing someone to be your enduring power of attorney, it is important to select someone who you trust and who you know will carry out your wishes. The person you choose should also be someone who is capable of making sound financial decisions on your behalf.
If you have a spouse or partner, they are usually the best choice for enduring power of attorney. However, if you do not have a spouse or partner, you may want to consider appointing one of your children or another close family member. It is important to remember that the person you choose should be someone you can rely on and who understands your wishes.
What happens if I don’t have an Enduring Power of Attorney?
In the event that you do not have this document and become incapacitated, a government body, the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT), will appoint a financial manager. That person may or may not be related to you and it may take 3-6 months to determine an outcome if there is a dispute within your family regarding the appointment of this financial manager. If you have not yet created an Enduring Power of Attorney document, contact one of our solicitors now and book in a free consultation to discuss your situation. Creating the document is a simple and affordable process and will give you peace of mind with regard to the safety of your assets.
— Falzon Legal