Comprehensive Powers of Attorney - Part One

On October 1, 2016, the Connecticut Uniform Power of Attorney Act will take effect. The following is a general overview of the use and benefit of powers of attorney, and in particular, the use and benefit of what we refer to at Massih Law, LLC, as “comprehensive” power of attorney.

What is a “Comprehensive” Power of Attorney?

To answer this question, we first have to define what a power of attorney. A power of attorney in Connecticut is a document that grants the “attorney in fact” or “agent” the power to make certain financial and personal decisions for the Principal (e.g. Deb names her husband Tom the attorney-in-fact in her power of attorney to make decisions on her behalf).

Unfortunately, many basic powers of attorney are so general in nature that they can actually cause more problems than they solve.

A comprehensive power of attorney avoids these problems by taking into account with particularity a greater number of concerns that are specific to the Principal, given their circumstances and stage in life.

For example, as people age, their needs change and their power of attorney should reflect these changes. Seniors have concerns about long-term care, applying for government benefits to pay for care, as well as choosing the proper care providers. They may also have a desire to protect assets in the event of a crisis. Without allowing the attorney in fact to perform these tasks and more, precious time and money may be wasted.

On the other hand, younger adult children may need to provide their parents with access to certain information, as well as their finances so that in the event of an accident, the parents may act quickly on their behalf. This can especially be an issue for adult children who are away at school.

Please call us if we can be of assistance in any way or if you have any questions about powers of attorney. We can be reached at (203) 651-5521.