It can be difficult caring for a loved one as they become older and less able to make decisions for themselves. When your parent or elderly loved one, the “principal,” becomes incapacitated, the Texas Power of Attorney (PoA) is a legal document allowing a trusted individual, or an “agent,” to act and make decisions on their behalf.
Texas legislation made durable power of attorneys and medical PoAs separate. The Statutory Durable Power of Attorney is recorded in the Texas Estates Code (§ 752 et seq.), while the Texas Health and Safety Code (Chapter 166, Subchapter D) outlines the powers and requirements of a medical PoA.
Texas Durable Power of Attorney
The Texas Durable Power of Attorney gives the appointed agent the ability to sell property, access bank accounts, and make other important decisions when the principal becomes debilitated.
The signed contract remains effective until the PoA is revoked or the principal passes away. Having a durable PoA ensures someone will be able to make decisions for you if you are unable to.
Texas General Power of Attorney
Similar to the Durable PoA, the General Power of Attorney gives broad rights to the agent. This may include decisions regarding personal finances and opening financial accounts for the principal.
The general PoA contract ends when the principal revokes the permission, dies, or becomes incapacitated. It may also end once the specific task has been accomplished or the time indicated in the document expires.
Texas Limited Power of Attorney
The Limited, or Special, Power of Attorney form grants your agent specific powers. For example, the Limited Power of Attorney for Eligible Motor Vehicle Transactions gives the agent full authority and power to buy, transfer, and allocate the motor vehicle’s legal title on the principal’s behalf.
Texas Medical Power of Attorney
The Medical Power of Attorney form is separate from other Texas PoA documents and allows you to choose a person you trust to make health decisions for you if you become incapacitated. Medical decisions may include consent for diagnostic procedures or medical treatments, arrangements for your care, and access to your protected health information.
Texas Minor (Child) Power of Attorney
The Minor Child Power of Attorney is a document that the parent of a minor uses to give powers to a selected guardian to provide care for their child in the event of their absence or illness. Parents do not lose their rights to their children but permit a caregiver or guardian to provide the proper care.