Power of Attorney
Have you considered what might happen to you or your property if you lose the mental capacity to make decisions for yourself? How about by whom and how you want to be cared for?
A Power of Attorney is a legal document that allows the grantor or the person granting the power (also known as the donor) to give to another person – the attorney – the authorization to do on the grantor’s behalf certain acts. Attorneys (also known as substitute decision makers) are entrusted with the power, task and responsibility of managing the affairs of the person who granted the power.
Therefore, it is essential that you trust the person you appoint as your attorney. The word “attorney” in the context of a Power of Attorney does not mean a lawyer and there is no requirement to appoint a lawyer as your attorney!
There are two types of Power of Attorney commonly used in Ontario: (a) power of attorney for personal care and (b) Continuing Power of Attorney for Property.
In Ontario, managing property for an incapable person is done by either a Guardian of Property or an attorney under a Continuing Power of Attorney for Property. Please see our page on Guardianship for more information on that topic.
CONTINUING POWER OF ATTORNEY FOR PROPERTY
An attorney appointed under a Continuing Power of Attorney for Property has the power to do, on the incapable person’s behalf, anything in respect of property that the person could do if capable, except making a Will.
Someone is incapable of managing property if he or she is unable to understand information relevant to making decisions regarding the management of his or her property or appreciate the reasonably foreseeable consequences of a decision or lack of decision regarding managing their property.
In order to have a valid Continuing Power of Attorney for Property the attorney needs to be appointed prior to incapacity. Therefore, you will not be able to appoint someone as an attorney for property during the time that you are incapable.
Keep in mind that a Continuing Power of Attorney for Property for property can also be granted in circumstances when the grantor is not necessarily incapable. Very often attorneys are appointed to manage the financial affairs of someone as a matter of convenience.
We can help you prepare your Power of Attorney however you wish for whatever circumstance, as long as they meet the basic legal requirements. Often, we prepare specific-purpose Power of Attorney – also referred to as Special Power of Attorney – to deal with specific purposes such as purchase or sale of real property such as a house.
POWER OF ATTORNEY FOR PERSONAL CARE
An attorney for personal care is someone who deals with personal care of an incapable person. An incapable person is someone who is unable to understand information that is relevant to his or her own health care, clothing, hygiene, safety, nutrition or shelter or appreciate the reasonably foreseeable consequences of a decision or lack of decision.
The person you appoint as your attorney can make personal care decisions on your behalf when and if you are not capable of making those decisions yourself. You are also able to include directions in your Power of Attorney for Personal Care that provide guidance on how decisions should be made.
Making someone an attorney is a very important decision that requires reflection on a variety of matters, including whether the attorney will make decisions based on your best interests.
Flat Fee for Power of Attorney
We offer fair, affordable and flat-fee options for preparing your power of attorney.
One Power of Attorney
- Or two for $149.99
- Mirror wills for spouses for $449.99
Will and Power of Attorney
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Often our clients find it difficult to travel to our office. Please let us know if that is the case for you. If coming to our office is not easy for you, we will come to you.
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