Completing a Power of Attorney

A Power of Attorney (POA) is one type of advance directive that allows you to authorize another person to act on your behalf. POA's are not just for people who are sick or old. If something happened to you and you ended up in the hospital, how would your bills get paid, or your other personal business taken care of? This series goes over the Power of Attorney form, including the options allowed and walks through filling out each section

Authored By: Alaska Legal Services - Anchorage

Filling out the Form: Sections 10-12 -- Optional Sections


Power of Attorney Series


Power of Attorney Series

Section 10 – Naming an Alternate Agent

“Choices to Make When Completing a Power of Attorney Form” talks about the possibility of naming two people as your agent, and some of the ways this can become complicated when agents needed to act together or when they each act separately.  Section 10 offers another option.  Instead of naming two people as your agents, you can name a second person as the alternate or successor agent in case the primary agent becomes unable or unwilling to serve.  For many people, this might be preferable to having two agents at the same time. Your primary is agent is the person named in Section 2 of the form; Section 10 is where you would name the alternate or successor agent.  Again, this section is optional. If you do not want to name an alternate, leave this section blank.

Section 11-- Nominating a guardian

In some circumstances, it may become necessary for a court to appoint a guardian or conservator for you even if you completed a power of attorney form. Section 11 allows you to state who you want to be your guardian or conservator if things end up in front of a judge. If a court appointment is necessary, your agent will no longer have any powers granted to the guardian or conservator.  Although there are some limits on this, Alaska law gives your preference top priority for this kind of appointment – and yes, you can nominate your agent.

Section 12- Health care POA

You may have noticed that Section 3 does not have a category allowing you to give your agent the power to make health care decisions. That’s because several years ago, the Alaska Legislature decided to make a separate Power of Attorney form for all health care matters. This form is called the Alaska Advance Health Care Directive.  The important thing to know is that everyone should have both forms – a health care POA and a regular POA that covers everything else. Section 12 does not appoint someone to make decisions – that’s done with the Advance Health Care Directive.  But it is an opportunity to make sure others know you have signed a separate advance directive for health care matters.

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