Advanced care planning is proactively making decisions about your care based on personal values, preferences, and discussions with your loved ones. Advanced care planning is necessary with old age or when someone is too ill to make his or her own decisions. Before determining advance care planning for your circumstances, here are a few questions from Ohio State Bar Association to discuss with your attorney.
What is Advance Care Planning? Advance care planning is a series of documents that directs how a person’s finances and health care decisions will be handled when they are mentally incompetent or physically incapacitated. Advance care planning also gives someone the ability to appoint a guardian or attorney at law for financial and health care matters.
What is the difference between guardianship and power of attorney? A guardianship is a legal relationship between the guardian and person who is no longer able to take care of his or her own affairs. A guardian is appointed to make decisions related to legal, financial and health care. The power of attorney is slightly different. It is an estate-planning document that allows you to appoint someone for all financial and legal affairs. Both roles are similar and can ensure your future is in the hands of someone trustworthy.
How is someone appointed guardian? If the court believes someone is in need of a guardian, they may choose to appoint a proposed guardian. A guardian should submit a written application requesting appointment as guardian, pass a criminal background check, and complete a six-hour guardianship-training course. Family members generally are the preferred guardians, although others named in a power of attorney might have priority.
What is the relationship between guardianships, powers of attorney and advance care planning? Generally, a guardianship is a public court proceeding necessary because the ward did not make an advance care plan and/or execute powers of attorney. A power of attorney is a private contract between the principal and his or her attorney-in-fact. Advance care planning consists of executing documents that remove the need for a court-imposed guardianship.
Advance care planning is important for the “what ifs” in life. If you would like to be proactive with advance care planning, contact Bryan B. Johnson, Attorney at Law. He has years of experience with estate planning and probate. To schedule an appointment, call Bryan B. Johnson at (614) 457-3272.