Gregg R. Lewis

Trusted Family Law

Services In Columbus

Gregg R. Lewis
Trusted Family Law Services In Columbus

What is a power of attorney?

| Feb 5, 2019 | Post-divorce Estate Planning |

After a divorce, you have many things you need to change and adjust with your estate plan. It is important to make sure that you do not forget anything. One thing you may overlook is your power of attorney. According to the National Caregiver Library, a power of attorney gives the person you name, the agent, the legal authority to make decisions for you if you cannot do it yourself.

You can limit the power to only making health decisions or financial decisions, for instance. However, the power extended through this legal document essentially makes the decisions the agent makes your decisions. So, if the agent chooses to do something on your behalf, it becomes legally binding as if you made the decision yourself. Keep in mind, though, that you do control the amount of decision-making power the agent has.

You want to change this after your divorce if you have your ex-spouse listed as your agent. If you fail to do so, he or she is bound to honor the duties, which could cause issues. You have to trust your agent and be on good terms with him or her. Understand that the court does not manage or regulate the powers of the agent, so the agent could abuse the power, which is why you need to ensure your agent is somebody you can rely on.

Getting all your estate in order after a divorce, including your power of attorney, can help prevent awkward or bad situations if something were to happen to you. This information is for education. It is not legal advice.