You have a lot of decisions to make when creating a financial power of attorney, including who you’ll name as your agent.
Your agent is the person who will step in and carry out your wishes in the event that you’re unable to do so. Since this is such a big responsibility, you must make sure you choose the right agent.
Here are some questions you can answer to ensure that you choose the right agent for your financial power of attorney:
- Is the person younger than you and in good health? You don’t have to necessarily choose someone who is younger than you, but they shouldn’t be too much older. Someone who is young and healthy is more likely to be willing and able to carry out their duties.
- Do you trust the person to manage your finances and make important money related decisions? Your agent will take on many responsibilities, such as paying your bills, collecting pay checks and retirement benefits and managing your real estate. You must be able to put 100% of your trust in them.
- Are they willing to act as your agent? Don’t assume that someone, such as a friend or family member, will act as your agent for your financial power of attorney. You should discuss this with them before naming them in your estate plan. Neglecting to do so can result in a situation in which the person refuses to take on the responsibilities.
- Will the person charge you a fee? If you choose a family member or friend, this isn’t typically something to worry about. However, no matter who you choose, it’s something you should think about. You may even want to offer to pay a fee as an incentive.
When you answer these questions, you’ll find it easier to narrow your choices and move closer to choosing the right agent for your financial power of attorney.
Once you make a final decision, turn your attention to completing your financial power of attorney document. This is a great addition to your estate plan, as it’s sure to give you peace of mind.