Who gets to be on the power of attorney for medical documents? 9 Answers as of February 17, 2012

My father will be living at different times with 3 of his children. Two live in the same state and one lives in a different state. Should all 3 of us be on the power of attorney medical?

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Martin Barnes - Attorney at Law
Martin Barnes - Attorney at Law | Martin Barnes
Thank you for your concern regarding your father's health care. The appointment of a health care representative is a personal matter to be made by your father. I encourage your father to seek the advice and assistance of an attorney. The points you raise are very valid considerations. One alternative that your father may want to consider is to identify one of his children to serve as his health care representative and to select another of his children (perhaps from alternative states/locals) to serve as an alternative health care representative. An attorney that your father feels he can trust can assist in explaining those choices and can draft the documents to ensure your father's wishes are properly represented.
Answer Applies to: Indiana
Replied: 11/11/2011
THE HUBBARD LAW FIRM, P.C. | Donald B. Lawrence, Jr.
The persons who become patient advocates under a durable power of attorney are appointed by the principal, in this case your father. If one of those states is Michigan, I will tell you that your father should probably have all three of his children on the power of attorney but should state the order of priority as to which is the primary person, the secondary person and who is the third person. The power of attorney should make provision for the agent to make decisions as to physical health issues and mental health issues.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 11/8/2011
Asset Protection and Elder Law Center
Asset Protection and Elder Law Center | Shadi Alai-Shaffer
Yes, there should be no reason that if dad wants, all three of his kids can be on the medical power of attorney. "Any of whom may act" which means anyone one child may act and make decisions for him re his healthcare.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/7/2011
Goldsmith & Guymon
Goldsmith & Guymon | Dara Goldsmith
That is really a question for your father to decide. He may want to have different powers of attorney to be used when he is in this home state, and others when he is traveling. I have clients who part time in two states and maintain powers of attorney that confirm with each state's laws and provide when one is to be used rather than the other.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 11/7/2011
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C. | Brian Haggerty
The one that lives in a different state should probably be named on the form used in that state (different states have different forms). For the two living in the same state (if that state is Oregon) Oregon's Advance Directive allows for a primary health care representative and an alternate. I might recommend an agreement between the four of you concerning how health care decisions will be made this would be difficult to hash out, and should be done carefully. Final note, it is not really good for an elder person to travel around. There is a thing called "transfer trauma" which affects the elderly. I understand it may be difficult, but it would be better to settle dad in one place.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 11/7/2011
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law | Charles M. Schiff
    This is a decision to be made by the Principal, that is, your father. If he chooses to include all three (3) children as co-attorneys, then every action will require that all children participate.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 11/7/2011
    Law Office of J. Brian Thomas
    Law Office of J. Brian Thomas | J. Brian Thomas
    Nobody "gets" to be listed. Your father can choose to appoint anyone he desires as his agent. He might pick one of his children, he might list all three to serve in succession or jointly, or he might pick another person altogether. The answer to your question, and the right to decide, rests exclusively with your father.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 11/7/2011
    Harville-Stein Law Offices, LLC
    Harville-Stein Law Offices, LLC | Dean D. Stein
    You should be able to designate "A or B or C acting together or alone as my healthcare proxy" on the Advance Directive for Healthcare, also known as a Living Will. You should make sure any form of it, will be valid in both States you intend to use it in, or a separate one can be done for those who live in Alabama versus the other state.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 11/7/2011
    Broad Law Firm, LLC
    Broad Law Firm, LLC | Donald K. Broad
    I would recommend it. You just need to make sure that the medical POA is in a form acceptable in both states.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 2/17/2012
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