Medical Power of Attorney for Children

By Lisa Magloff

A medical power of attorney for a child, or child medical consent, is a legal form that is used when the parents are unable to consent to a child's medical treatment for a period of time. This can occur when the child is away at camp or under the care of a relative for a period of time. This form allows the caregiver to make medical care decisions that the parents would normally make.

A medical power of attorney for a child, or child medical consent, is a legal form that is used when the parents are unable to consent to a child's medical treatment for a period of time. This can occur when the child is away at camp or under the care of a relative for a period of time. This form allows the caregiver to make medical care decisions that the parents would normally make.

Function

Medical personnel are not allowed to carry out certain types of treatment on a minor without the parents' permission. This generally includes many types of treatment that are not emergency life-saving procedures. The consent form names a temporary guardian and notifies medical personnel that the guardian is authorized to consent to the child's treatment. The form may also contain a list of medical procedures that the guardian is authorized to approve. This type of medical power of attorney usually only takes effect if it is needed.

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When to Use

A child's medical power of attorney or consent form is used in a variety of circumstances. If your child is going to a sleep-away camp or boarding school, you may be required to sign a consent form to allow the camp to treat your child if he becomes ill. If you are travelling and leaving your child in the case of a friend or relative, you should also make out a consent form. Many schools require parents to sign a consent form that takes effect only in the event the child is injured and the parent cannot be reached. Some people also use consent forms with babysitters and nannies.

Powers

A medical power of attorney for a child gives a very narrow range of powers. It does not transfer any of your parental rights other than the right to make health care decisions. This type of consent is not effective if the parent becomes disabled or dies. The form can be written so that it only covers certain types of medical care, such as emergency care only, or it can authorize any care the guardian feels is necessary. The form can also be written so that it is only valid on certain dates.

Duration

The maximum duration of a medical power of attorney for a child is governed by individual state law. For example, the maximum duration in Massachusetts is 60 days, while an Alaska power of attorney can last for up to one year. If the parent is in the military and is being sent to active duty, the power of attorney can last longer -- generally until 30 days after the parent returns from deployment.

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Medical Power of Attorney for Child Care

References

Related articles

Medical Power of Attorney for Kids

A medical power of attorney is normally used to authorize one person, known as the attorney-in-fact or agent, to make medical decisions on behalf of a person who is ill or injured. Since a minor cannot execute a power of attorney, however, an adult must execute it on behalf of the minor.

Power of Attorney for Consent to Medical Care of a Minor

Adults can consent to their own medical care, generally without the need for anyone else's input. But children--typically, minors under the age of 18--cannot provide legal consent. When a parent or legal guardian is not available to give consent in person, he can create a written power of attorney allowing someone else to consent on his behalf.

The Rights & Responsibilities of a Temporary Guardian in Arkansas

A temporary guardian is a person appointed by the court to play the legal role of a child's parent, when parents are unable to do so. A court may appoint a temporary guardian when a parent is incarcerated, temporarily too ill to care for the child or after a parent dies. In Arkansas, guardians have many of the same rights and responsibilities of parents. The guardian must relinquish the child to the parent at the end of the term of guardianship if the order of guardianship orders her to do so.

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