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Can I get POA for my mom with a note from her primary care doctor?

Mom is pretty much in the latter stages of dementia,and we do take care of her affairs, but we want to change her from a Medicare advantage plan back to Medicare. She is incapable and I do have the doctors letter, will that take care of this?
Status: Open    Feb 24, 2015 - 02:26 PM

Elder Law

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Expert Answers

Jul 10, 2015 - 09:43 AM

No. In order to step into your mother’s shoes and make legal and financial decisions for her, you must have been designated as her agent under a durable power of attorney. Your mother cannot execute such a document unless she has the requisite mental capacity. A letter from your mother’s doctor does not grant you the authority to act for her legally and financially. If your mother is incapable of understanding the nature of the document and is disoriented as to person, place and time, then she cannot execute a power of attorney. You may need to apply to become your mother’s legal guardian, a process which is generally expensive, intrusive and time-consuming.

Jul 14, 2015 - 11:15 AM

No. You cannot get a POA with a note from mom’s doctor. An attorney will need to draft the POA and then visit with mom to assess whether or not she has capacity to execute a POA. If the attorney does not feel comfortable that mom knows what she is signing and that she trusts the person she is appointing, it may be necessary to pursue guardianship.

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