Do you have someone that will manage your affairs if you are incapacitated by a sudden illness or an accident? Your close family members or spouse may automatically come to mind. However, without the legal authority to act on your behalf, it may not be as easy for them to step in your shoes.
It is why you need to formally appoint someone and give them the legal capacity to represent your interests in financial and health matters or anything else that would require your input. A power of attorney document lets you do that. In Louisiana, it is also known as a contract of mandate.
How contract of mandates work
With a contract of mandate, you get to appoint someone to act on your behalf. The person you choose is known as the mandatory.
As the principal or mandator, it is up to you to decide what the mandatory can do or their scope of authority. You can have a legal representative with the power to make financial decisions on your behalf and another to handle health matters. You can also specify when they can stop or begin acting as your mandatory.
Your mandatory owes you a fiduciary duty
Given that a contract of mandate is an agency relationship, the person you designate as the mandatory is legally obligated to act in your best interests. They must fulfill their duties prudently and diligently. That way, you can rest assured that your affairs will be in safe hands when you are not in a position to act by yourself.
Getting started with a contract of mandate
It is best to anticipate events like incapacitation by planning accordingly, something a contract of mandate can help you achieve. It will save your loved ones a lot of trouble and help safeguard your interests if the unexpected occurs.