Powers of Attorney Lawsuits and Mother’s Day
I have posted a power of attorney story that will interest all mothers. You can read the story, entitled “Why Do You Forsake Family?”, on Money.ca. It is about a mother named Sharon. She has issues with a family power of attorney.
Many people do not understand the dos and don’ts of powers of attorney. It looks like a simple thing to prepare. But I warn people that powers of attorney documents are like loaded guns. People can point them at you!
Make sure you only put powers of attorney in the hands of those you trust.
Powers of Attorney for Property
These are legal documents. They affect your rights and money. The powers of attorney name an attorney – an agent or substitute decision maker, not a lawyer – to act for you while you are alive.
In the wrong hands, powers of attorney are a license to steal. But that does not mean you should avoid getting a power of attorney.
Not having a power of attorney is more tragic.
What Happens When You Don’t Have a Power of Attorney?
The government forces your family to go to court to become a statutory guardian. You must hire lawyers to take you through the process. It can take months and tens of thousands in costs and legal fees.
You can find more information about the different powers of attorneys you need in Estate to the Heart. You can order a hard copy of it from EstateTherapy.com. Don’t go there yet until you read about my special offer.
Mother’s Day Special Offer All May
Order paperback copies of Estate to the Heart by calling my office and ask for the Mother’s Day special. During May, I will give you a 2 for 1 special deal on Estate to the Heart (paperback). I will mail you two autographed copies of my book for you and your mother. You can both enjoy this easy to follow book. I guarantee your money back if you are not happy with it. I can say that because I have been told:
“Everyone who reads it loves it.” – D.J.
Power of Attorney Cautions
Your financial advisor can recommend you have a power of attorney. However, they cannot give you legal advice about such documents.
Be wary of any financial planner or paralegal who offers to prepare powers of attorney for you.
Powers of Attorney Disputes
I have been invovled in many lawsuits over powers of attorney.
These are complicated because few people, including lawyers, understand the Ontario Substitute Decision Act, 1992.
People often think they can save hundreds of dollars by creating their own legal documents. This includes power of attorney documents.
Well, you may not know you have a problem until it’s too late to fix. Some legal problems can take years to resolve in court. This can cost thousands of dollars a day for each lawyer involved.
Make the investment in proper legal advice to prepare a power of attorney.
Power of Attorney Tips
1. People make mistakes when they do not specify an alternate person to act as their attorney. Always name a back-up or alternate person to act as your agent in case your first choice is not able.
2. Make sure your choice of attorney does not have a conflict of interest. If they have a conflict, they could put their own interests ahead of yours. Usually, this means your stockbroker should not have your power of attorney. Get independent legal advice before you make any decisions.
3. If you choose an attorney who lives outside of Canada, they will have trouble dealing with Canadian banks.
Take advantage of my month long Mother’s Day special offer. Treat your mother to something she really needs. Ask her if she has a power of attorney.
If you need free information about powers of attorney, check out my other guide and blog posts:
Edward Olkovich (BA, LLB, TEP, and C.S.) is a nationally recognized author and estate expert. He is a Toronto estate lawyer and Certified Specialist in Estates and Trusts. Edward has practiced law since 1978 and is the author of seven books. Visit his website, mrwills.com, for more free valuable information.
2013 © MrWills.com. This information is not financial, legal, tax advice or a substitute for professional advice. Always consult with a professional before taking any action.
Posted In: Powers of Attorney On: May 9th, 2013