A power of attorney is a legal document whereby you give a trusted person or persons (the attorney or attorneys) the authority to manage your affairs if you are not able to look after matters on your own. A power of attorney is therefore different from a will in that it is used to protect your wishes while you are alive; a will is used to protect your wishes after you’ve died.
    • Power of Attorney for Personal Care; It allows the attorney to make decisions relating to your medical care, where you should live, social activities and also decisions on life-saving treatment. A personal care power of attorney will not come into force until you lack the capacity to make your own decisions about your care, treatment and welfare. You should appoint a trusted family member or friend who has a genuine concern for your well-being.
    • Power of Attorney for Property; It deals with financial matters and allows another person to manage your finances, including your property and bank accounts when you are no longer able to do so yourself. This power of attorney can be used when you lack the capacity to make your own financial decisions. However, it may also be used where you still have capacity but due to illness or infirmity, you need help looking after your affairs.