Powers of attorney
About powers of attorney
Powers of attorney are legal documents that let someone appoint another person who can make decisions for them or support them to make and give effect to their own decisions. Powers of attorney give choice and control.
Enduring powers of attorney are a type of power of attorney. They ‘endure’ (continue) even when the person who made them is unable to make their own decisions about matters. Anyone can experience an accident or illness that affects their ability to make decisions. For this reason, the Office of the Public Advocate (OPA) recommends everyone over the age of 18 years consider making enduring powers of attorney. OPA provides advice for people appointed under powers of attorney so they can understand their role and carry out their duties according to the law.
The supportive attorney appointment is another type of power of attorney. Supportive attorney appointments are a way a person can be supported to make decisions. Supportive attorney appointments are designed to promote the right of people with disability to make their own decisions about things that affect them.
Not sure where to start?
Plan your future care
Part of planning for the future is to make choices now in case of accident or illness.
Upcoming changes to the law
Medical decision making laws will change on 12 March 2018 when the Medical Treatment Planning and Decisions Act 2016 starts.
Protection from abuse
The Guardianship List of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) and the Supreme Court have responsibility for enduring powers of attorney and ensuring that enduring attorneys, medical agents and supportive attorneys fulfil their role and responsibilities.
If you have an urgent concern, contact the OPA Advice Service.