Many people tend to avoid making out their wills and setting up advance health care directives. Especially with health care directives and powers of attorney, it is not always easy to think about a time when you will no longer be able to speak for yourself and need someone to handle your affairs.
However, for most people who take the time to establish these long-term care planning instruments, there is a great peace of mind in knowing that everything is in order. In the event that you become incapacitated, you will have named someone you trust to handle things for you, and you will have already communicated the exact parameters as to how these decisions should be made.
With offices in Manhattan and Queens, we also serve clients in Brooklyn, lower Westchester, Nassau County and the entire New York City metropolitan area. Advance directives attorney Deborah S. Ball can help you understand your rights and options, and walk you through every step of the process of setting up advance directives.
Advance Directives Options
Every advance directive document will fall into one of two categories: either financial or health-related.
Power Of Attorney
The power of attorney is the instrument used most frequently as a financial advance directive. The power of attorney names an agent or agents to handle financial affairs for the principal, grants the agent(s) the power to carry out these affairs, and delineates the limits and instructions for carrying out these financial affairs.
It is essential to work with an experienced advance directives lawyer when establishing powers of attorney, especially in light of the 2010 changes to New York’s power of attorney laws. These changes involve issues that include:
- New powers no longer automatically revoke former powers unless expressly stated
- New recognition of powers established in other jurisdictions
- Exclusions of certain business, commercial and real estate powers
Health Care Proxy
A health care proxy is an important end-of-life instrument. Where a power of attorney establishes an agent to make financial decisions on the principal’s behalf, a health care proxy establishes a health care agent to make health care decisions for the principal.
You can use a health care proxy to name your agent and leave detailed instructions as to how you want your health care to be handled in the event that you are no longer able to communicate those wishes on your own.
Another option is a “do not resuscitate” (DNR) document that spells out your wishes in detail directly to your health care providers. The main benefit of the health care proxy is that you will have someone you trust in charge of making the final decisions regarding your health care.
Speak With An Experienced Lawyer Before You Make These Decisions
To get started with your advance directives, either call one of the firm’s New York offices or email the Law Offices of Deborah S. Ball.
Interpretation for documentation services available in several languages.