Achievements, duties of an influence of lawyer information

Q: Years ago my parents met with a lawyer to put their home and financial assets in a trust. I was appointed to serve my mother’s health care authority when my father was no longer able to act on her behalf. I didn’t think about it that much until my father died. Now my mother is 95 years old, has dementia and is described as a “failure to thrive”. I am in conflict about how aggressive I should be when facing new medical problems. How do I decide what to do in the future?

A: A well-designed power of attorney should clearly state your mother’s wishes for life support. Rely on this document when discussing your mother’s deteriorating health with a doctor.

Take comfort in following your mother’s instructions when she was clear and able to consider these complex, highly sensitive matters. The choices she made were most likely based on her values ​​and religious beliefs.

Dilemmas arise when death is not expected, but treatment can affect a person’s health and ability to function. You should be sure that any doctor or hospital where your mother is cared for has a copy of the power of attorney.

You have the right and responsibility to discuss any proposed treatments for your mother. Try to determine if adequate treatment will enable her to make an adequate recovery. Also, assess how easy or difficult these procedures will be for them. Make sure you get answers to all of your questions.

Often times, the quality of life that health practices enable can be the driving force in evaluating such decisions.

Acting as an advocate for a loved one is seldom easy. It can be emotional and make you question your judgment. Remember, your mother trusted you to act on her behalf and chose you to help her during times like these.

It can be helpful to discuss your situation with friends or relatives who have had similar experiences and seek advice from a lawyer specializing in these matters.

Having trouble caring for an older adult or struggling to find resources? Our experienced staff will be happy to help you. Visit us online at for more information. You can also call us at 1-800-892-0890 or send an email to [email protected]. Joan Hatem-Roy is the chief executive officer of Elder Services in the Merrimack Valley and North Shore.

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