Durable Power of Attorney
for Health Care Decisions
In a Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care Decisions the Principal grants to the Attorney in Fact the legal authority to manage the Principal's health care affairs in the event of and during the Principal's incapacitation or disability. The authority granted to the Attorney in Fact normally includes all legal rights and powers the Principal would be able to exercise and implement as a competent individual, including but no limited to, the power to employ health care professionals, consent to medical treatments and procedures, the administration of drugs, access and review all medical files, review and sign documentation, and in general manage all of the Principal's health care affairs.
A Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care Decisions is a critical and important component of any individual's estate plan. If an individual should become incapacitated or disabled without such document in place such individual's family or loved ones would be required to petition the local probate court in order to acquire the authority to manage such individual's health care affairs. They would seek to institute the formal court proceeding known as guardianship.
A guardianship proceeding is costly and time consuming since it continues in existence as long as the individual remains incapacitated or disabled. Such legal proceeding is court supervised and requires an annual accounting and court audit. In addition, the legal services of an Attorney are usually required, which can be expensive as well.
You may avoid conservatorship proceedings by creating a Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care Decisions while you are competent and prior to your incapacitation or disability. To acquire such document please review, print and complete the Request Form found on this website. The document provided will incorporate the provisions of the Missouri Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care Act (Chapter 404.800-404.872 of the Missouri Revised Statutes).