If my adult son had a recent accident and is a non-responsive coma, how do I obtain power of attorney?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If my adult son had a recent accident and is a non-responsive coma, how do I obtain power of attorney?

Asked on November 29, 2012 under Estate Planning, Washington

Answers:

Victor Waid / Law Office of Victor Waid

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You will need to obtain probate legal counsel to file a petition for conservatorsahip of his person and estate if any, which will give you the power to act on behalf of your son.

Catherine Blackburn / Blackburn Law Firm

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, under these circumstances you cannot obtain a power of attorney.  A Power of Attorney must be signed by the "principal," which in this case is your son, and the principal must have capacity to execute it.  A person in a coma does not have capacity to execute a power of attorney.

If your son regains consciousness and can understand what he is doing, he can execute a power of attorney at the time. Many life and estate planning lawyers will go the hospital to assist, if necessary.

If you need authority to act for him before he regains consciousness, or if he lacks capacity after he regains consciousness, you will need to petition the court for a guardianship (called a conservatorship in some states).  This is a fairly expensive process, so I suggest you wait and see how your son recovers if you do not need legal authority right now.

I am sorry that you and your son are facing these circumstances.  I wish the best for you and your family.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption