Summary: If you are planning to leave your child or children at home for an extended period of time, you should consider leaving a Power of Attorney, Permission Letter, and/or a Medical Consent Letter with the child’s caregiver.
With the kids out of school and summer right around the corner, many families are planning or preparing for their vacations. For the parents who will be taking a kids-free vacation this year, there are a few documents you should consider leaving with child’s caregiver.
Power of Attorney For Care of a Minor Child
You may have heard of a Power of Attorney for estate planning purposes; however, this legal document pertains to the care of your child(ren). Under Georgia law, for a person to be named Power of Attorney for a child, they must be 1) an adult, and 2) a Georgia resident. The individual does not have to be directly related to the child. This form gives the caregiver the power and authority to arrange for medical, dental, or mental health treatment; to access educational or medical records; and to provide for their food, lodging, and entertainment. You can also grant additional, specific powers via this form, such as the ability to sign forms for the child or to write checks on their behalf. Both the parent and the caregiver must sign the form, and the document also must be notarized. The parent can make the Power of Attorney form effective for one year, for a specific period of time (such as the time you will be on the vacation), or effective until revoked.
Written Authorization or Permission Letter
This is a non-legal letter that authorizes the caregiver to perform certain activities on behalf of the child(ren), such as picking the kids up from daycare or signing school/camp permission slips. The document should include the parent’s travel plans, his or her contact information while on vacation, the caregiver’s contact information, and a brief description of the parent/caregiver arrangement. In addition to leaving a copy with your child(ren) and the caregiver, it is also a good idea to send a copy to the child’s school, daycare, summer camp, or anywhere else the caregiver may need to make decisions or act on behalf of the child.
Medical Consent Letter
If your child needs medical treatment while you are on vacation, the caregiver must have your permission to treat them. A medical consent letter gives the caregiver the ability to authorize that medical treatment. Parents should prepare a medical consent letter for each of their children. The document should include the contact information for the doctor’s office, what medical treatments the caregiver may authorize in your absence, and who to contact in case of emergency. You may also want to include a copy of the child’s insurance card. Many doctor’s offices have a standard Medical Consent Letter for parents to fill out; however, it is important to note that both the parent and the caregiver may have to sign the form and/or the form be notarized before it is effective.
If you have additional questions about what forms to leave with your children and their caregiver, or if you would like to set up an estate planning consultation, contact Siedentopf Law via our website at EstateLawAtlanta.com or by calling (404) 736 – 6066.
© Sarah Siedentopf and Siedentopf Law, 2019. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Siedentopf Law and EstateLawAtlanta.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
For more articles like these, sign up for the Siedentopf Law newsletter
What Are Your Estate Planning Questions?
Atlanta estate planning items like health directives, wills, trusts and more can be overwhelming and confusing.