The owner of the Law Offices of Barbara H. Katsos P.C. in New York, NY, Barbara Katsos focuses much of her work around trusts, estate planning, and wills. Possessing more than two decades of experience, Dr. Katsos is familiar with all aspects of estate planning, such as powers of attorney.
A power of attorney appoints someone to handle your financial and legal affairs in the event you are unable to do so. Following are four things to consider when choosing a person to appoint as your power of attorney:
1. Trust. One of the biggest factors involved in selecting a power of attorney is trust. You must trust the person that you choose and firmly believe that he or she will have your best interests at heart. The person you select also should understand your values.
2. Qualifications. Ideally, you will select a power of attorney who has some experience with financial and legal affairs and who is capable of using sound judgment to make decisions. Since not every person may be familiar with every aspect of your life, you may want to appoint multiple powers of attorney.
3. Age and location. This may seem unimportant, but you want someone who is accessible as your power of attorney. For this reason, you should focus on finding a candidate who lives in the same city or town as you. You also need a person who is unlikely to pass away before you do.
4. Family dynamics. You don’t have to choose a family member as your power of attorney. In fact, it’s best not to in some situations. If your family members disagree with one another, choose a neutral person outside of the family. Further, consider the fact that appointing a family member can cause jealousy among other family members.