With summer in full swing, a lot of people are looking forward to the days ahead when they can sit back, relax on the beach, and take a vacation from their day-to-day lives. For many of these people, summer vacation means either taking the kids to stay with grandma and grandpa, or leaving the children behind under the care of a relative or close friend.
Regardless of the circumstances under which children are cared for by someone else, parents planning a vacation without their children need to be sure that they’ve done all that they can to protect the child’s needs. Part of this process might require you to create powers of attorney that transfer temporary decision-making authority to someone else.
Here’s what you should know about powers of attorney, child care, and how you might need to create one before you take your summer vacation.
As a parent, you probably don’t give much thought to your ability to make decisions on your child’s behalf. For example, when you go to the doctor, you probably readily consent to whatever treatments or care options your doctor recommends for your child. But what if you are the person going to the doctor? What if you go on vacation, leave your child with your parents, and those parents have to make medical decisions or communicate to the child’s doctor instead of you?
This is where the transfer of parental decision-making rights comes into play. Normally, only a parent or guardian is allowed to make decisions on the child’s behalf. However, should you know that you will be unable to be there to make important decisions, you can plan ahead and choose to transfer your authority to another. You do that by creating powers of attorney.
Childcare and Powers of Attorney
A power of attorney is a type of legal document that allows you to name an agent who will have the authority to act on your behalf. The document will detail the kinds of decisions the agent is allowed to make. When you are creating powers of attorney in preparation for taking a vacation or leaving your children under the care of someone else, your document can specify that you want to give that adult the ability to make medical or other parental decisions on your behalf.
Taking Children With You
It’s also important to point out that, should you be taking your vacation with your children as well as with children who are not yours, having powers of attorney with you can also be vital. If the children who are coming with you are not yours, you might talk to the parents of those children before you go, and ask them if they would like to grant you power of attorney. This will allow you to, while you’re on vacation, to make medical decisions on their child’s behalf. Without this ability, getting approval for medical care on behalf of those children could be problematic.