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POAs and UAHDs
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Powers of Attorney and Utah Advance Healthcare Directives

What is a Power of Attorney?
A power of attorney (POA) is a written document in which you authorize another (called the attorney-in-fact) to make certain decisions for you. 

1.  Springing.  A springing power of attorney generally takes effect or springs into effect upon the incapacity of the person.Durable. 

2.  A Durable power of attorney takes effect immediately upon signing (as opposed to the springing power of attorney).  Until it is properly revoked, it will allow the attorney-in-fact to use any and all of the authority given in the power of attorney within its allotted scope.  This type of document can provide great flexibility to you if the identified "attorney-in-fact" is trustworthy and understands the wishes of the giver.  Otherwise, it can easily be abused and may leave you in dire circumstances.Limited. 

3.  A Limited power of attorney is generally restricted as to its duration or as to the type of authority given by the document (or frequently utilizes both types of restrictions).

Generally, anyone age eighteen (18) or over who would like to authorize another to make decisions in the event of the incapacity of the giver should have at least a springing power of attorney or possibly a limited power of attorney.

What is an Advanced Healthcare Directive?
Prior to 2008 in Utah, most well-drafted estate plans included a separate healthcare power of attorney.  Like the types of powers of attorney set forth above, these healthcare powers of attorney could be springing, limited, or durable.  Most well-drafted estate plans also included a living will.  In 2008, the Utah legislature enacted the Utah Advance Healthcare Directive (UAHD).

The UAHD essentially combines the powers of a healthcare power of attorney with a living will by allowing you to plan for medical incapacity and to express your wishes regarding appointment of a guardian, organ donation and other disposition of your body, and termination of life sustaining care.

The UAHD allows you to appoint an agent for the express purpose of making healthcare decisions for you; allows you to identify whether you wish to participate in organ donation or other disposition of your body; and provides the opportunity to identify the extent to which you wish to permit life sustaining care. 

Generally, anyone age eighteen (18) or over who would like to authorize another to make the decisions contemplated by a UAHD should have one.

Jon H. Rogers, Attorney at Law * 825 North 300 West, Suite N144 * Northgate Park Business Center * Salt Lake City * Utah * 84103 Phone: (801) 532-6272 Fax: (801) 532-4192