In addition to a trust, power of attorney for financial management, or power of attorney for health care, you need to have a medical disclosure authorization document. The first three types of documents all involve someone that you selected taking over to manage your affairs if you cannot manage them yourself.
Your Doctor May Need to Get Involved
It is largely a medical question as to whether you are able to manage your affairs. Most likely your doctor will need to state in writing whether you can manage them yourself anymore.
There are strict federal and California laws that prevent doctors and other health care providers from disclosing a patient’s confidential medical information without the consent of the patient. Those laws are called the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (“HIPAA”) and the California Confidentiality of Medical Information Act (“CMIA”).
Medical Disclosure Authorization Enables Your Doctor to Get Involved
The medical disclosure authorization document provides that consent. That way your trust, power of attorney for financial management, and power of attorney for health care can work the way you want.
Without the medical disclosure authorization document, the people you named to manage your affairs may never be able actually to do that. It would be like a catch-22 without documentation from your doctor stating whether or not you can manage your affairs for yourself.
Don’t let that happen to you. Make sure that you have this brief and very important document.