With a power of attorney, you can appoint someone that you trust to act can on your behalf. A power of attorney for property relates to financial matters, and a power of attorney for personal care relates to medical matters. Most people choose a family member or close friend.
A living will is a direction in a power of attorney for personal care that specifies your treatment wishes. For example, you could state that you do not want to be kept alive on artificial life supports if there is no hope of recovery.
It is important for all adults to have a properly prepared and valid powers of attorney in place. Illness and accident can strike suddenly at any age and you could be unable to deal with your finances and care as a result. If you haven’t appointed someone to act for you in these circumstances, a family member will have to apply for that authority under the Substitute Decisions Act. If no family member is applies, the Office of the Public and Guardian and Trustee will make the application. The application process can be complicated, costly, and time consuming. On the other hand, having powers of attorney in place is easy and inexpensive. Plus, you choose who will act for you, not the government.