A Power of Attorney form allows you to appoint another person to act on your behalf should you ever require someone to make short- or long-term decisions for you. On a Power of Attorney form, the person granting authority to another is the Principal. The person who is granted authority is called the Attorney-in-fact or Agent.
Power of attorney, also referred to as a POA, is a legal document that allows a person (principal) to choose someone else (agent or attorney-in-fact) to represent their financial, medical, tax, vehicle, parental, or any other needs selected. The document does not need an attorney to create (although it is always advised that a person seek legal counsel) and after completion, depending on the State, signatures need to be witnessed by at least two (2) people or by a notary public (preferred).
A Medical Power of Attorney allows you to name your health agent, someone who will make health decisions for you if you cannot. Your health care agent will also ensure that your health care providers give you the care you wish to receive. You can also require that your health care agent communicate in any manner with you about any specific proposed health care. For example, you may still be able to communicate by blinking your eyes. Many states, however, combine a Living Will and Power of Attorney into one advance directive form.
A Springing or Conditional POA only goes into effect if a certain event or condition occurs. It can end at a specific time, when you become incapacitated or when you die.