FAQs About Powers of Attorney and Directives

Can I Get Medical Power of Attorney Over an Incapacitated Person?

by Rania Combs

A distraught mother contacted me. Her daughter was incapacitated in an intensive care unit as a result of a drug overdose, and her drug-addicted son-in-law was in control of making medical decisions for her.

Naturally she was concerned. She did not believe her son-in-law had the capacity to consider her daughter’s best interests. “How do I get a medical power of attorney over my daughter?” she asked.

A medical power of attorney allows individuals to specify who will make medical decisions for them if they are incapacitated and can’t make them for themselves; however, once they are incapacitated, they can no longer grant a power of attorney.

If there is no power of attorney, or if there is a power of attorney but the appointed agent is abusing his authority or is otherwise incapable of acting in the best interest of the incapacitated person, it is possible to ask a court to intervene and appoint a guardian. A person granted guardianship would then have the legal ability to make decisions pertaining to the matters over which guardianship is granted.

About Rania

Rania graduated magna cum laude from South Texas College of Law Houston and is the founder of Rania Combs Law, PLLC. She has been licensed to practice law since 1994 and enjoys helping clients in Texas and North Carolina create estate plans that give them peace of mind.

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