If my father is in the hospital but is not competent to make his own decision, is my mother still considered in charge even though they are in the process of getting divorced?

And, if so, can she give me the power to make decisions? The hospital said he voiced that his parents can make decisions but in his medical reports he was not competent then either. I don’t know if I need t to get an attorney or not.

Asked on March 5, 2015 under Estate Planning, Pennsylvania


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for the situation.  If your parents are not divorced yet then the hospital would probably look to her when a situation warrants a decision regarding his care.  Now, the hospital may have it in their records that he wishes his parents to make decisions but if there is not health care proxy of any kind (a legal document) and you question his conpetnancy at the time the statements were made, I would say that you need to have the court issue you an order granting you to be the guardian and conservator of his estate to make them yourself.  I see a fight on the horizon between your Mom and Grandparents and you do not need to have your Dad or you in the middle.  Make the application.  Good luck.

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