How to pay billls if my dad is currently in the hospital in a medical coma?

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How to pay billls if my dad is currently in the hospital in a medical coma?

He’s the only income earner in the house and is not able to write the checks out. Is there any where I can go or do, to keep paying these bills, even while he is unconscious?

Asked on November 11, 2012 under Estate Planning, California

Answers:

Catherine Blackburn / Blackburn Law Firm

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, now that your Dad is in a coma, there is only one option to manage his assets, and that is to establish a guardianship (conservatorship in some states).  This is a formal process and fairly expensive.  You should consult with a probate & estate attorney in your area immediately to discuss your specific circumstances and choose how to proceed.

For those who are not yet in this situation, please see a life or estate planning lawyer and prepare a power of attorney.  This will avoid the need for a guardianship under circumstances such as this.  When faced with an emergency like this, it becomes much less expensive to prepare a power of attorney than to open a guardianship.  A power of attorney is also much more flexible than an guardianship, much easier to use, and private as opposed to open in court.


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