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How do I get an emergency power-of -attorney for my brother, he is in the hospital &is to go on medicaid, then to nursing home

Lanham, MD |

He suddenly became disoriented and in a car accident. He is 100 miles away.They cannot figure out how a 52 y.o has no memory. He is getting tested. He was rushed in an ambulance to hometown hospital and I got an emergency call. His home is in foreclosure, but it needs his personal belongings removed and the home closed up. He will be sadly put into a rehab/nursing home and they said it can be near me so at least he has someone. He was all alone where he lived.He needs someone to help make medical choices and to handle his business affairs ( he may have social security available at some point but no pension). I need to help him apply for medical aide/medicaid also.How do I do this. I am willing to go to hospital

Attorney Answers 3


Is your brother in Maryland or in another state? And is he mentally competent to read and understand a contract? If so, any lawyer in the state where he is located can print out powers of attorney that can be signed and witnessed wherever your brother is located. If in Maryland, then you can go to a lawyer close to you, obtain all the documents, and drive out to your brother. If he is in another state, you need to use a lawyer in that state because the laws governing powers of attorney can vary from state to state. Where the power is signed is what matters. You will need at least two powers of attorney: a general durable power of attorney to manage his financial and property affairs, and a medical power of attorney to make medical decisions on his behalf. These two documents should not cost more than a few hundred dollars. If your brother has no Will, then you should have a conversation with him about who he wants to distribute his estate to and who he will have act as his personal representative. If you wait until he is no longer competent to sign a Will, then the estate will be more complicated and costly to probate. If your brother is not mentally competent to do any of these things, then you may have to establish a guardianship. Before pursuing that costly option, be aware that Maryland and most other states have a statutory scheme that permit family members (in a strict order of preference) to make medical decisions on behalf of a mentally incapacitated person, without the need for a medical power of attorney. If your brother's doctors are comfortable that your brother's incompetence is only temporary and he will reach mental clarity soon, then you may have time to wait and have him sign the powers of attorney later.

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Call a local probate or estate attorney. A power of attorney is easy enough, but it depends on the capacity of your brother to grant permission. If he is of "sound mind" enough to make an appointment, it is a simple process of filling out a form. If not or it is a close call, a guardian might need to be appointed. We always recommend people have durable powers of attorney and/or medical directives in place in advance.

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Find an attorney close to hospital to take a power of attorney document to explain and get signed by your brother.

The answer given does not imply that an attorney-client relationship has been established and your best course of action is to have legal representation in this matter.

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