Powers of Attorney

What is a Power of Attorney?

This is a very commonly asked question! We often think about what will happen when we pass away, but it’s not often that we consider what would happen during our lives if we aren’t able to make decisions for ourselves. Whether it be due to age, ongoing illness or disability, temporary incapacity, or physical limitations, having Powers of Attorney in place is just as important as having a valid Will in place.

The two most common types of Powers of Attorney are:

  1. Enduring Powers of Attorney; and
  2. Appointment of Medical Treatment Decision Maker.

We recommend that everyone has both an Enduring Power of Attorney and an Appointment of Medical Treatment Decision Maker in place. Both of these Powers let you appoint a person (or in some cases multiple people) to make decisions on your behalf in certain circumstances.

There are also other less common types of Powers of Attorney, including General Power of Attorney (non-enduring) and Supportive Power of Attorney. These types are only used in very specific circumstances.

What if I don’t have Powers of Attorney?

If you don’t have a valid Enduring Power of Attorney or Appointment of Medical Treatment Decision Maker in place and you lose capacity to make decisions for yourself, then your loved ones face a few hurdles in order to be permitted to make the decisions they need to make for you.

For example, if you are incapacitated and you can no longer manage your own finances, pay your bills, or make changes to your accounts, then an interested person such as your spouse, adult child, parent, sibling, or other person would need to make an application to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) to be granted powers to deal with these types of matters for you. These applications are never guaranteed to be successful. There are some situations where VCAT won’t make all the orders asked to be made, and they may even end up appointing an independent third party such as State Trustees to manage your affairs.

It is much easier for your loved ones if you simply make valid Powers of Attorney appointing your Attorney or Attorneys. We can discuss the different types of Powers of Attorney in detail and prepare the required documents to ensure that you maintain control over who can manage your affairs for you if you can’t do it yourself.

Contact us now on 03 5929 7010 or enquire online for an appointment to discuss your Powers of Attorney further!

For a list of suburbs we service please check out the Coverage page!