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Call: +61 3 8600 6000

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Powers of Attorney & Guardianship

While a Will operates after you have passed away, Powers of Attorney are increasingly important to assist you during your lifetime, should the need arise.

Loss of mental capacity is an issue that is becoming more and more prevalent given the aging population in Australia, and increases in life expectancy. However, mental capacity also can be lost through illness or accidents, which can strike unexpectedly at any age. When this happens, it is important that you have appointed somebody that you trust to make decisions on your behalf.

There are two types of Powers of Attorney:

  1. An Enduring Power of Attorney appoints a person or persons to make decisions on your behalf in relation to your financial and/or personal affairs; and
  2. An Appointment of Medical Treatment Decision Maker appoints a person or persons to make medical decisions on your behalf, should you lose capacity to give informed consent and directions as to your medical affairs.

Aitken Partners can help you to appoint the right people to make decisions on your behalf so that you have peace of mind. We can also provide you with advice on making an Advanced Care Directive, which in Victoria allows you to give binding instructions for your future care and treatment.

VCAT Guardianship

If you don’t have powers of attorney in place, the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) is empowered to appoint an administrator and guardian to manage your affairs when you lose capacity.

VCAT also has the ability to remove an attorney or administrator who is breaching their duties, and can order them to pay compensation to the principal’s estate.

Aitken Partners is experienced in making applications to VCAT’s Guardianship List in order to resolve disputes with family members over the care of a loved one.

Ask us about:

  • Making enduring powers of attorney, appointing a medical treatment decision maker, or making an Advance Care Directive;
  • Assessing a person’s mental capacity;
  • Your duties as an attorney;
  • Making decisions for an incapacitated person, including obtaining approval from VCAT to sell property or assets;
  • Having an attorney removed for misconduct; or
  • Having an administrator or guardian appointed by VCAT.

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