Power of Attorney is a written document by which a person legally delegates to someone else a part or all of his/her/her authority to make legal decisions on certain matters on a short or long-term basis.

Any person who is able to make his/her own decisions, but who wants to plan for a possible future incapacity, may delegate any part of his/her own decision-making power to someone else through a lasting or “durable” power of attorney, which must be notarized. A durable power of attorney which gives the power to consent to medical or other professional care cannot later be overridden by the guardian, unless the guardian petitions the probate court and obtains permission to do so. (5-501)

A guardian may transfer “power of attorney” to another person or organization in a written, notarized statement filed with the probate court. This type of power of attorney is effective for up to six months but can be renewed. (5-104)

Source: Maine Department of Mental Health, Mental Retardation and Substance Abuse Services

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