If you have a springing power of attorney document, this means that the document becomes active when you are incapacitated. One of the leading reasons why people choose a springing power of attorney is that it only becomes active in certain situations.
However, if your power of attorney document requires that you be incapacitated for your attorney in fact to take action, you’ll need to think about what incapacity means. You will have to define incapacity and then your doctor will have to agree that you meet that definition when the time comes.
How do you know when health changes could cause you to require help managing your finances and what if you need help before you reach the point of being incapacitated as defined by your document? But if your doctor believes that you do have capacity but your attorney or agent thinks you’re incapacitated, this can be very difficult for your attorney in fact agent to take the necessary action when you are unable to make decisions for yourself.
Set aside a time to sit down with an experienced estate planning lawyer to learn more about when and how to use a springing power of attorney or if a more general durable power of attorney might be more appropriate for your situation.