Notary Public Questions – Why Do You Need A Representation Agreement?

July 13, 2016 | Published by

A question that’s often asked at our notary public office in Vancouver is “what are the documents I need notarized” or “which services do I need?” There are minor differences between each of the notarization services that we offer – and it’s easy to get lost as to which service(s) are right for you.

We often receive questions about Representation Agreements – whether or not they need one, what is the criteria, and more. Whether you need a Power of Attorney or a Representation Agreement – we’re here to listen and guide you through the options that are available to you.

Representation Agreement – Common Questions

Here are some common questions regarding Representation Agreements – which are often confused with Powers of Attorney.

“If my partner and I have Enduring Powers of Attorney, do we still need a Representation Agreement?”

  • A Power of Attorney is limited to legal and financial matters only. This applies to both a “Power of Attorney” and an “Enduring Power of Attorney.” You will need a Representation Agreement if you want to appoint someone to make health-care decisions for you.

In BC, the only way to have someone to make personal care decisions for you is to have a notary public or lawyer appoint them under a Representation Agreement.

You can learn more about the differences between a Representation Agreement and a Power of Attorney in our notary resources section.

“My partner and I already know what’s best for each other. If anything were to happen – do we still need to draft a Representation Agreement?”

  • In an emergency, you and your partner will be able to make health-related decisions for each other. However, this would only be applicable in an emergency as you would be appointed as a “temporary substitute decision maker.

A Representation Agreement would be required if you are to make long-term health care decisions for your partner – perhaps with his or her doctor.

Without having a Representation Agreement, it would be difficult for you to make health-related decisions for your partner if his or her family members disagree with your decision.

“If my parents become sick, would I be able to use their Power of Attorney for healthcare purposes?

  • As described in the first question, a Power of Attorney is insufficient in BC for an appointed individual to make any health-care related decisions. A Representation Agreement can allow the appointed individual to make end-of-life decisions if the necessary provision is included in the document.

End-of-life decisions and Will preparation are an important part of any family’s planning. If you anticipate a situation where you would want an appointed individual to make health-related decisions for you, you need a Representation Agreement.

“Is it too late for me to draft a Power of Attorney for my parents?”

  • If your parent is now mentally incapable of entering into a contract, such as a Power of Attorney, what’s known as a “Section 7 Representation Agreement” can be used to appoint an individual to manage financial, personal and health-care matters.

Ideally you do not want to be in a position where you or your relatives are in need of a Representation Agreement and do not have one already.

You have the freedom to decide what to do with your life. You need to make it clear how you want to receive treatment or support – and to what extent. This is why we at Vancouver Downtown Notary Public recommend that you draft a Representation Agreement ahead of time, while all party members are capable of making decisions and are clear on each other’s standpoints.

If you have any additional questions about Representation Agreements, how they are done and what they entail, please contact our notary public in the heart of downtown Vancouver.