When it comes to acting as an attorney for personal care, your attorney should consult with your family members to discuss your changing needs, medical situation and obtain their opinions regarding any change in the directions to provide to medical professionals with respect to your personal care. The attorney should also consult regularly with the health care providers, and seriously consider following the advice that they provide.
Ultimately, decisions are in the hands of your attorney, regardless of advice receive from health professionals involved in your care, or your family’s wishes.
When it comes to acting as an attorney under a Power of Attorney for Property, your attorney is governed by the Ontario Trustee Act. When appointed as attorney of your property, there is an obligation to deal with your finances only to your benefit, or the benefit of your bona fide dependants (such as minor children), and not the benefit of the attorney.
For example, the attorney ought not to make loans to themselves using your assets or credit. Upon the Power of Attorney taking effect, the attorney should inventory your estate, determining the location and value of your assets, as well as your debts. Copies of the records showing the balance of the assets and debts when the attorney’s role starts, as well as they change, is important.
The attorney is also responsible for maintaining thorough records (with receipts) of their spending and to report to the Court on a regular basis to ensure no improper spending has occurred.
It is prudent to seek legal advice when an attorney’s power starts, then an accountant to assist them in tracking the necessary figures and paperwork.