My husband has Alzheimer’s Disease. His will, written years ago has me as the primary beneficiary. I have his power of attorney and would like to change the beneficiary in case I die first. Can this be done in Massachusetts?

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My husband has Alzheimer’s Disease. His will, written years ago has me as the primary beneficiary. I have his power of attorney and would like to change the beneficiary in case I die first. Can this be done in Massachusetts?

As my husband’s power of attorney am I allowed to change the second
beneficiary in case I die first? Currently I am the sole beneficiary.

Asked on June 23, 2019 under Estate Planning, Massachusetts

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

The attorney with whom you spoke is correct. A power of attorney does not allow you to create or change a will for another person. Only the testator (person making the will) hinmself can change a will, including changing beneficiaries; and since a testator can only do this if he is mentally competent, if your husband has Alzeimer's and is no longer competent, his will cannot be changed.


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