Power of Attorney:
This is an estate planning device in which you empower someone else to act on your behalf. The Louisiana Civil Code calls this kind of relationship a “Mandate” and the person empowered to act for someone else is called a “Mandatary.” This person is more commonly referred to as your “Agent.” Although Louisiana law has its own special terms for these concepts, Louisiana lawyers often use the terms “agent” and “power of attorney” because people are familiar with those terms. The South Louisiana Elder Law team works hard to make sure you understand any and all special terms and words used in your estate planning devices.
General Power of Attorney:
Provides your Agent with broad authority. It says that at any time – and in just about any capacity – your Agent can conduct business in your name. The Agent can be given great discretion. As mentioned above, the Louisiana Civil Code calls this kind of relationship a “Mandate” and the person empowered to act for someone else is called a “Mandatary.” Under Louisiana law, mandates can be general or very specific and they may address business issues or deal with medical decisions and healthcare matters.
General Durable Power of Attorney:
This is a General Power of Attorney that remains valid even during your incapacity. Under Louisiana law, all “mandates” or “powers of attorney” are durable unless (1) you say it terminates if you become incapacitated or (2) you are formally declared incapable in a lawsuit called an “interdiction” and the court appoints a “Curator” to manage your affairs. The court-appointed Curatorship terminates any existing mandates. This is one reason a comprehensive estate plan that relies on a Revocable Trust as the centerpiece is better than a plan based on a power of attorney. The Revocable Trust can be drafted so that it is not terminated by interdiction. That way, the people you name to take over as your successor trustees will continue to manage the property in the trust no matter who the court appoints to serve as Curator.
Durable Power of Attorney for Health:
This estate planning device allows you to designate an Agent, of your choice, to make health care decisions for you if you become incapacitated. As mentioned above, the Louisiana Civil Code calls this kind of relationship a “Mandate” and the person empowered to act for someone else is called a “Mandatary.” Under Louisiana law, mandates can be general or very specific and they may address business issues or deal with medical decisions and healthcare matters. A well-drafted Healthcare Power of Attorney is an important part of any comprehensive estate plan and the South Louisiana Elder Law team will make sure you have a Healthcare Power of Attorney that fits your particular situation and addresses your worries.
These “triggers” or events can put into motion the shift of assets out of the name of the person who is incapacitated in order to qualify for Medicaid benefits.
This are the terms other states use to describe court-supervised proceedings that result in naming an individual or entity to manage the affairs of an incapacitated person. In Louisiana, a lawsuit to have a court determine if a person is incapable of taking care of their person or their property is called an “interdiction.” After a court determines that a person needs to be “interdicted” then it will appoint a “Curator” who will have control of the interdicted person, subject to complicated provisions for court supervision. We call this situation the “Curatorship Nightmare” and we can show you how to make an “incapacity plan” to minimize the chances that you will ever end up in this nightmare.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 2003, known as “HIPAA,” created privacy protections for medical information which prevents hospitals and physicians from providing your personal health information to anyone that is not listed in a signed HIPAA Release. This release allows the Agents under your Advance Health Care Directive/Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care, and the Trustees under your Revocable Living Trust to carry out their duties.