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What Is A Power of Attorney?

The unpredictability of the future can feel unnerving, but you can prepare for all eventualities by granting powers of attorney. Such arrangements empower a person of your choosing to act on your behalf in managing healthcare, financial, and business obligations if you’re incapacitated.

Through a power of attorney, your selected representative is given the authority to manage your healthcare, financial, and business affairs.

When Should I Contact a Powers of Attorney Lawyer?

Contact our Worthington powers of attorney lawyer today. Don’t hesitate to take this important step now.

General and Healthcare Powers of Attorney

Types of Powers of Attorney

Residents of Worthington often choose to incorporate general and healthcare powers of attorney into their well-rounded estate planning. Ohio law regards these powers as durable, affirming their sustained operation in the event of mental incapacitation.

General Powers of Attorney

In Worthington, Ohio, legal counsel who focuses on powers of attorney is required to meticulously create these documents, ensuring they conform to Ohio’s present legal standards and suit the client’s individual needs.

The general power of attorney—also referred to as the financial power of attorney—allocates legal authority to an individual appointed as the attorney-in-fact or agent. This agent is granted authority over a comprehensive range of financial and business operations as described in the power of attorney.

The attorney-in-fact is responsible for overseeing banking, working with financial entities, managing property transactions, and handling the financial dealings of the principal.

Healthcare Power of Attorney

A healthcare power of attorney, also known as a medical POA, serves as a standalone legal accord that confers on the attorney-in-fact the capacity to make healthcare decisions in place of the principal.

This pertains to decisions about medical care, choices concerning end-of-life care, and financial aspects of healthcare. The agent’s authority to make these decisions is enacted only when the principal is legally determined to be mentally incapacitated and not in a position to make prudent healthcare choices.

Additionally, a Worthington power of attorney can make provisions for a subsequent agent, ready to assume the role if the primary agent is unable or unwilling to act. Specific directives and limitations can be embedded in the document to narrow the agent’s broad powers, thus safeguarding the principal’s interests.

Limited Power of Attorney

Whenever a particular situation or financial transaction requires you to grant authority to someone, the laws in Worthington, Ohio, provide for the formulation of a limited power of attorney. This legal declaration assigns your chosen agent, also identified as an attorney-in-fact or POA agent, the legal right to act on your behalf strictly within the scope of the instructions detailed in the document.

For example, you could employ this paper to give someone the authority to conduct a one-time real estate transaction for you. However, the agent’s power is limited to the precise confines set forth in the POA document, which prohibits them from initiating actions or making decisions not outlined in the power of attorney.
The document can be drafted to include specific instructions and safeguards to protect your best interests. Importantly, a limited power of attorney is active only for the specific duties and timeframe specified, and the agent is legally required to act in your best interests within that defined scope.

Reasons to Include Powers of Attorney in Your Estate Plan

Powers of attorney are vital components of your estate plan. With powers of attorney, you will:
  • Avoid guardianship
  • Designate a trusted person to manage your affairs
  • Ensure the fulfillment of your financial and medical needs
  • Have a plan in place for your loved ones

Is Your Current Power of Attorney Powerful Enough? Is it even Valid?

Powers of Attorney are not uniform. In Worthington, Ohio, the default or state-issued power of attorney paperwork provides a constricted delegation of authority to your proxy. If you envision the agent handling only a handful of specific duties or if your trust in the nominee is partial, this might be the preferable path.

Conversely, if you expect your agent to fully undertake your capabilities and handle all tasks you can do, then the statutory power of attorney will be insufficient. Most people will benefit from consultation regarding which powers to integrate into the document to address their personal needs and those of their relatives in the event of incapacity.

The enactment of Ohio’s Uniform Power of Attorney Act in March 2012 means that a power of attorney created beforehand might not be legally enforceable. At a minimum, it might not serve your current needs, particularly after over a decade has elapsed.

Thus, it is wise to have a Worthington, Ohio, attorney assess your power of attorney to ensure it is in accordance with legal standards and reflects your wishes for the future. If it falls short, your Jarvis Law Office attorney can craft a new one for you.

Choosing an Agent for Your Power of Attorney

In the process of appointing an agent for your power of attorney, look for key characteristics. It’s important to choose someone who is not predisposed to exploiting their role and who can grasp the weight of their duties, making crucial decisions with the cooperation of others.

This person is often one who is geographically close and has the capacity for meticulous attention to detail, resilience in the face of adversity, and consistent follow-through. To cover all bases, it’s beneficial to identify one or two reserve agents if your top pick is not available to serve. Review your choices with your attorney, who administers powers of attorney.

Powers of Attorney and Your Estate Plan

Ohio’s legal provisions disallow your agent from conducting any maneuvers that could compromise your arranged estate plan. The key intention behind creating an estate plan is to forestall any confusion, miscommunication, or unanticipated situations that might provoke questions about your property and your plans.

Ensure that everyone is on the same page by having your Worthington powers of attorney lawyer create your estate plan. Then, the attorney can review it with your agent if you wish. Contact us today and schedule a consultation to take the first steps.

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Frequently Asked Questions

A Power of Attorney (POA), as defined under Ohio law, is a legal document that confers legal authority to an appointed individual, known as the agent or attorney-in-fact. This authority empowers the agent to act on behalf of the person executing the POA, commonly referred to as the principal.


In the context of estate planning, a POA serves as a crucial tool that allows for the designation of a trusted individual to oversee vital matters. These matters can extend across a broad spectrum, encompassing financial and business matters, healthcare decisions, and even interactions with financial institutions.


The agent’s authority, as laid out in the POA document, can range from managing bank accounts and transferring real estate to making critical healthcare decisions, such as end-of-life care and medical treatment. The scope of this authority is typically defined by the principal’s needs and the current Ohio law.


An essential aspect of a POA under Ohio law is its potential durability. A durable POA, whether it be a durable financial POA or a healthcare POA, maintains its validity even if the principal becomes mentally incapacitated. This durability ensures that the agent can continue to make financial decisions or healthcare decisions on behalf of the principal without the need for court intervention.


However, creating a POA requires the principal to be a mentally competent adult capable of understanding the implications of their actions. It’s important to note that under Ohio law, the POA automatically ends if the principal passes away or if a court invalidates it.


In the hands of a knowledgeable Worthington power of attorney lawyer, a POA can be drafted with specific instructions and stipulations tailored to the principal’s best interests. The attorney can ensure the POA complies with the legal requirements set forth in the Ohio revised code and can provide vital legal information to the principal.

A General Power of Attorney grants broad powers to the agent, allowing them to handle various financial and legal matters on behalf of the principal. This includes managing bank accounts, real estate transactions, and legal proceedings. Unlike limited POAs, general POAs are comprehensive and do not have specific restrictions.

While a General Power of Attorney focuses on financial and legal matters, a Healthcare Power of Attorney is specific to healthcare decisions. It grants the agent the authority to make medical decisions on behalf of the principal if they are unable to do so. This ensures that the principal’s medical preferences are honored, even if they cannot communicate them.
A Limited Power of Attorney restricts the agent’s authority to specific tasks or transactions. This could include managing a particular property, handling a business matter, selling a car, or any other limited scope defined in the document. Limited POAs are useful when the principal only wants to delegate authority for a specific purpose.

Having a Power of Attorney in place provides peace of mind and ensures that someone trusted by the principal can manage their affairs if they become incapacitated. This can help avoid the need for court-appointed guardianship, streamline decision-making, and protect the individual’s interests according to their wishes.

Consulting with an attorney, especially one specifically focused on elder law and estate planning like Jarvis Law Office, ensures that the POA is drafted correctly and complies with Worthington, Ohio’s legal requirements. An attorney can help customize the document based on the individual’s unique circumstances, minimizing the risk of misunderstandings or legal challenges.
Yes, a well-crafted Power of Attorney can be a valuable tool in Medicaid planning and asset protection. It allows the agent to manage financial matters, making it possible to engage in strategic planning to qualify for Medicaid benefits while protecting assets. The knowledgeable Power of Attorney lawyers at Jarvis Law can assist in creating a comprehensive plan tailored to the client’s needs.

Please note that the information provided here is general in nature and should not be considered legal advice. It is recommended to consult with an attorney from Jarvis Law Office to obtain personalized advice based on your specific circumstances.

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