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Guardianship or Power of Attorney: A Comparison

Guardianship Required when someone no longer has sufficient mental capacity to execute a Power of Attorney   Durable Powers of Attorney Person executing a Power of Attorney must have mental capacity sufficient to understand what he/she is signing       Guardianship Court Proceeding required   Durable Powers of Attorney Privately prepared legal documents       Guardianship Approximately three months until formal appointment of Guardian   Durable Powers of Attorney Can be prepared in little time       Guardianship Large legal fees   Durable Powers of Attorney Small legal fee       Guardianship All decisions and actions are subject to Court approval             Durable Powers of Attorney Agent can accomplish any transaction that the principal has set forth in document       Guardianship Annual accounting required   Durable Powers of Attorney No accounting required       Guardianship Legal proceedings needed to terminate Guardianship   Durable Powers of Attorney Powers can easily be revoked at any time       Guardianship Most Courts are now allowing Guardians to engage in Medicaid planning   Durable Powers of Attorney Agent can engage in Medicaid planning on behalf of the principal as well as any other action provided for in the document