What are Power of Attorney Documents?
When you think of estate planning, you most often think of wills and trusts. With a will and/or trust you can direct your loved ones on how to handle your affairs after you die. But what if you are alive and sickness or age has left you incapable of caring for yourself? A will or trust will not help in this situation. If you want to decide who will take care of you and your financial affairs in the event of your incapacity, then you must execute valid power of attorney documents while you still have capacity to do so.
What are the Different Types of Power of Attorney Documents?
Power of attorney documents are generally split into two types of documents: financial power of attorney and health care power of attorney. The financial power of attorney will authorize an agent to make decisions regarding your financial affairs. The health care power of attorney will generally authorize your agent to accept or reject medication or medical treatment on your behalf.
Must an Attorney Prepare Power of Attorney Documents?
Clear Counsel Law Group believes it is best to consult with an attorney when signing power of attorney documents (we realize that sounds self-serving), but no, an attorney is not required to prepare valid power of attorney documents. Indeed, in the current COVID-19 environment, meeting with an attorney may not be desirable or even possible. In hopes of helping those that want the peace of mind of having such documents prepared and in place during this troubled time, below are simple instructions on completing your own power of attorney documents.
In Nevada, the forms for financial and health care power of attorney can be copied and pasted directly from Nevada Statutes.
- Financial Power of Attorney (Statutory Form Power of Attorney). The form for financial power of attorney can be found in NRS 162A.620. You should include ALL the language from that provision.
- Health Care Power of Attorney (Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care Decisions). This form can be found in NRS 162A.860. You should include ALL the language from that provision.
Once printed, you must coordinate with a notary public to properly execute and notarize the document. If you are unable or unwilling to physically interact with a notary, then you can use an electronic notary.
Clear Counsel Law Group is currently accepting in-person meetings, but we are also available for phone calls and video conferences to discuss your estate planning needs.
Taylor L. Waite