Many people are now self-isolating, in quarantine or receiving medical treatment due to COVID-19.
At a practical level it is becoming more difficult to “get things done”. We are also potentially moving towards further stages of government restrictions and social-distancing.
You make decisions and choices about how you spend and invest your money on a daily basis. If COVID-19 prevents you from being able to make financial decisions, or attend to the payment of bills and expenses, you would want to have some level of control over how these transactions were carried out on your behalf. Due to the legal requirements of the Land Titles Office, financial institutions, telephone and power companies, if you are unable to attend to the transaction yourself, the person you have nominated requires the legal authority to do so.
While technology is providing some of the solutions for many everyday interactions, there are numerous instances where formal authorisation is required which could be problematic for many in our community. Having a power of attorney in place is the best way to overcome these complications.
A Power of Attorney is a legal document which confirms your authority for a family member, friend or other trusted person to make financial decisions and enter into property transactions on your behalf. It is therefore one of the most important elements of your estate plan.
An ordinary, or “general”, power of attorney is used when, although you are capable of managing your own affairs, there is some specific reason why you won’t be able to. This can be particularly useful if you are unable to attend to your financial affairs due to self-isolation, quarantine or hospitalisation or perhaps you are operating on the basis that one nominated family member will attend to all business outside the family home.
The benefit of an “enduring” power of attorney is that it will continue to operate even if you have lost full legal capacity, for example you are a confirmed case in intensive care. Taking the time to make an enduring power of attorney means that your financial affairs can be looked after by someone you know and trust.
Not having a Power of Attorney can create significant legal issues for family members which are not necessary during these difficult times. Powers of Attorney are essential documents to have during this emergency.
If you require assistance or further information in relation to powers of attorney contact us on 8523 8400 to arrange a telephone or video conference for an initial no obligation consultation. Alternatively, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website www.rudalls.com.au.