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Massachusetts Durable Power of Attorney

Massachusetts Power of Attorney

A Massachusetts durable power of attorney, like your will, makes up an indispensable part of your estate plan. That is why we include a power of attorney form with all our "estate planning packages".

While the will carries out your instructions after your death, the durable power of attorney allows you to carry on your financial affairs when you are disabled. Unless you have a properly drafted power of Attorney, it would be necessary to apply to the Massachusetts Probate Court to have a guardian or conservator appointed to make decisions for you when you are disabled. That process is very expensive and time-consuming. The court may appoint a total stranger to oversee your affairs. It can cost thousands of dollars and take several months in Probate Court. The proceedings could be contested. They would be public.

Durable Power of Attorney

You can avoid that costly court process by the use of this very powerful tool: the "durable power of attorney". This power is inexpensive and easy to execute. The benefits are obvious:
-
your wishes are carried out exactly as you want them
- you can decide who will make your decisions for you
- it can be effective immediately or upon your subsequent disability
- it is a flexible document: you can delegate as much or as little authority as you desire
- it is inexpensive
- the Probate Court process will not be necessary.

The way the durable power of attorney works is simple: You continue to retain full control over your affairs unless and until such incapacity occurs. If it does, the person you have appointed will take over your affairs and act within the specific guidelines you have already established.

Massachusetts General Laws c.201B creates two types of durable power of attorney in Massachusetts:
1. A "present" durable power of attorney in which the power is immediately transferred to your attorney in fact or:
2. A "springing" or future durable power of attorney that only comes into effect upon your subsequent disability as determined by your doctor.

The person who carries out your wishes is called "attorney in fact". Normally this would be your spouse or another trusted family member or friend. Your attorney in fact can pay bills, deposit checks, handle taxes, sell stocks, invest in securities and do all things that you normally would do. You can revoke this power at any time as long as you're competent.

In other words, flexibility, privacy, independence, cost control, certainty, convenience and piece of mind our all achieved by the use of this important estate planning tool.

When combined with a health care proxy and a properly drafted Massachusetts Will, the durable power of attorney completes a formidable and affordable estate planning package for small to moderate sized estates.

Update: Warning: Many Nursing Homes are now "sneaking" mandatory arbitration agreements into the pile of documents unsuspecting residents are required to sign upon admission. This greatly restricts the rights of any resident suffering an injury or wrongful death from bringing a claim against the negligent Nursing Facility. To counter this you need to consider including a clause in your Power of Attorney specifically reserving the right to a jury trial rather than an arbitration. Talk with us if you want this important protection added to your Power of Attorney!

Contact us to let us create your durable power of attorney.

Call us 1-617-479-4300

Hamill & Gray, LLP
36 Miller Stile Rd.
Quincy, MA. 02169

 

Hamill & Gray
36 Miller Stile Rd.
Quincy, MA. 02169

Massachusetts Estate Planning Attorney

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