It is important for all adults to have an Enduring Power of Attorney.
An Enduring Power of Attorney is a legal document which outlines who you have appointed (your ‘Attorney’) to make financial and or personal / health decisions on your behalf when you no longer have the capacity to make such decisions.
- Appoint more than 1 attorney;
- Nominate the way in which your attorney makes the decisions for you. e.g. you can nominate that your attorneys can make decisions individually, jointly or as a majority;
- Appoint a different person as your financial attorney to that appointed as your personal / health attorney.
For financial decisions, you can nominate whether you want your attorney to commence making financial decisions immediately, on a specified date or upon a certain occasion such as when you have lost capacity to make financial decisions.
Your financial attorney can make a range of decisions on your behalf, including:
- Managing your investments;
- Ensuring your bills are paid;
- Preparing your tax return.
Personal / health decisions
Your attorney’s power to make personal / health decisions will only start when you lose capacity to make personal decisions. An attorney for personal matters can make decisions on your behalf regarding:
- Where you will live;
- Who you will live with;
- Your recreational activities.
Accountability of the attorney
An attorney is personally liable for the decisions they make on your behalf. The Adult Guardian has the powers to investigate instances where it is alleged an attorney has improperly used their powers under an Enduring Power of Attorney. Unfortunately, there have been instances where attorney’s have mismanaged their role. Therefore, it is important to carefully consider who you want to appoint under an Enduring Power of Attorney.
If you do not have an Enduring Power of Attorney in place
If a person does not have an Enduring Power of Attorney and has ongoing impaired decision-making capacity, application can be made to the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal to have someone appointed to make decisions on behalf of the adult with impaired capacity.
For further information regarding an Enduring Power of Attorney, please contact Leigh Avuri, Principal, Avuri Lawyers on 0402 912 962, or by email: email@example.com.