What is a power of attorney?
In simple terms, it is a formal document enabling you to give another person (generally known as an ‘attorney’) the authority to make decisions on your behalf.
You will be legally bound by any decision made by your attorney. It is critical you appoint someone trusted who will act in your best interests. You may only validly appoint an attorney when you have capacity to do so. Power of attorney legislation is different in every State and Territory so it is imperative you seek expert advice when preparing your powers.
Reasons for powers of attorney
You can put in place someone trusted as your attorney to manage certain aspects of your affairs ─ for example financial, medical treatment, or personal matters ─ in the event that, through illness or accident, you lose the ability to make decisions yourself.