Common Estate Planning Mistake #7: Failing to include enough powers in a Power of Attorney for Property

Not all Power of Attorney for Property documents are created equal. Some may give authorization for an agent to pay your bills, while others may give authorization for your agent to do more complex things such as setting up a trust for you to protect your assets.

In this Elder Law and Estate Planning Minute, Wes Coulson discusses another common estate planning mistake and the drawbacks of failing to include enough powers in your Power of Attorney for Property.

Common Estate Planning Mistake #7: Failing to include enough powers in a Power of Attorney for Property


Hi, I’m Wes Coulson and this is your Estate Planning Minute. This is another in our series of common mistakes that people make in planning their Estates. One of those mistakes is not having enough powers included in their financial powers of attorney.

The best way to think about this is that a power of attorney is a took kit. The more tools you have in the kit, the better the tools you have in the kit, the more jobs you’re going to be able to accomplish. Not all powers of attorney are created equal. The basic statutory forms give authority to do things that fall under the heading of paying your bills and taking care of your everyday business. But, they don’t give authority to do some potentially important things like setting up trusts to protect assets, making gifts for tax or eligibility purposes, having access to digital assets and passwords. The moral of the story here is – don’t get a form off the internet. Find a good attorney who knows what he or she is doing. You’ll get a lot of value out of doing it that way. Thanks.

For more about Power of Attorney documents, visit these articles:

Coulson Elder Law is dedicated to providing families in the St. Louis area with their Elder Law needs. Our practice areas include Asset Preservation Planning, Veterans Benefits, Medicaid Eligibility, Alzheimer’s Planning, Special Needs Planning, Estate Planning and more. We understand the financial challenges you may face as you and your loved ones grow older. At Coulson Elder Law, our clients’ well-being is our number one priority. For immediate help, call (877)995-6876 or Contact Us and we will get in touch as soon as possible.