Changing Power of Attorney in Orange County
California Elder Law Attorneys
Whether from aging or a health condition like dementia, you can become incapacitated and unable to make your own legally-binding decisions. When this happens, a durable power of attorney or POA document allows a designated agent to make medical or financial decisions on your behalf. At some point, you may need to make adjustments to your POA document’s terms, or designate a new agent altogether. You may also wish to remove a negligent agent who has taken advantage of your elderly loved one.
Whatever your needs, our Orange County elder law attorneys can review your POA documents and determine a better course of action, for you or for an elderly family member. We have several decades of combined experience in elder law matters, and we know how sensitive and complex these cases can become. Our compassionate and dedicated legal team will strive to help you find the right solution for your family’s future.
Ready to speak with our team? Contact us online for more information about how to change power of attorney.
What Can a Power of Attorney Do?
There two main types of POA: healthcare power of attorney, and financial power of attorney. Both documents perform similar functions, and designate an “attorney-in-fact” who can make decisions on behalf of the “principal.” Where a healthcare POA allows an attorney-in-fact to make key care decisions, such as where the principal lives and receives medical treatment, a financial POA defines who will manage the principal’s property and financial accounts.
However, there are any number of provisions that can be included in either POA, and there are subtle differences between the documents that can be difficult to navigate. For instance, a healthcare POA may also be a “springing” power of attorney, which means it can only go into effect once you are deemed mentally incompetent.
Modifying a POA
From changing relationships to concerns about your attorney-in-fact, there are multiple reasons you might want to change your POA. Modifying a POA is a straightforward process – provided that you have the mental capacity to sign legal documents. Although the current attorney-in-fact doesn’t need to be notified, it’s always best to let everyone involved know about any changes, to avoid challenges later on.
Unfortunately, once an individual becomes incapacitated, they cannot change or transfer their POA documents. If your loved one has been manipulated or abused by their current attorney-in-fact, you may need to bring a civil action against the agent, and subject their actions to formal court review. Once the court determines that the current attorney-in-fact is unfit, they can revoke the POA and appoint a conservator to care for your elderly loved one.
Do you need assistance with power of attorney documents, or suspect that your elderly loved one has been abused by an attorney-in-fact? Contact us at (949) 565-4281 for a free consultation.