If you do not have a power of attorney, can you sign documents for someone?

A nursing home wants me to sign but I do not have a power of attorney. She is incapacitated.

Asked on July 21, 2012 under Estate Planning, California


Brad Micklin / The Micklin Law Group

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

In New Jersey, a power of attorney would not help you in this situation. At a minimum, you need a health care directive and/or a living will. A medical directive and a living will are similar to a power of attorney but address specifically medical issues and the authority to make them for another.

However, since the patient is incapacitated, he or she will not be able to execute a valid Living Will. Accordingly, you willl need to petition the court for a guardianship appointment. In order to accomplish this,  you need two doctors to indicate the patient is unable to handle his or her own personal financial affairs.

You should immediately speak with an experienced attorney in this area.

Brad Micklin, ESQ.
187 Washington Ave.
Nutley, NJ 07110
973 – 970 – 5032
Email: [email protected]

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