In an effort to encourage Ontarians to think ahead and create Power of Attorneys, the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee (OPGT) recently launched a video series all about Power of Attorney documents and their use. This new video series aims to increase awareness about Powers of Attorney, including the basics of what they are, when they are used, and why they are important. The videos also encourage their appropriate and responsible use, and dispels misconceptions and myths about what happens when a person becomes incapable.
All videos are accessible on the Ontario Government’s Youtube channel in both English, French, and described video via the following links:
With the launch of this new resource available to the public, now is as good a time as any to look back and review some of the other public resources the OPGT has put out there related to Power of Attorney and Guardianship matters.
Power of Attorneys
Common questions and answers about Power of Attorneys are compiled in a publication titled “Powers of Attorney Q&As”, and can be found in both English and French by clicking this link.
For individuals ready to execute a power of attorney document of their own may want to consult the OPGT’s Power of Attorney toolkit. This toolkit is free and easy to use, having been specifically designed to help members of the public execute a Power of Attorney without having to go through a lawyer. The toolkit is available in both English and French, and available to download by clicking here.
The OPGT also has resources dedicated to topics beyond Power of Attorneys, such as Guardianship. An overview of what being a Guardian is, how it differs from being an Attorney, and how to become a Guardian, can be found here. The OPGT has a separate publication about the duties of a Guardian, which can be downloaded here.
One thing that might be surprising is that the Public Guardian and Trustee will conduct investigations to determine if a Guardian (often the Public Guardian and Trustee himself) needs to be appointed for a person. The OPGT has published a brochure about the ins and outs of this process. The brochure covers topics such as when an investigation is commenced, how investigations are conducted, what happens after someone is placed under the Public Guardian and Trustee’s guardianship, and how to get in contact with the OPGT if an individual is concerned about a person’s wellbeing. This brochure is available for download here.
The Substitute Decisions Act, 1992
For those who are curious and want to read up on the Substitute Decisions Act, 1992, which is the legislation that governs matters relating to Power of Attorneys and Guardianship, the OPGT has a publication called “A Guide to the Substitute Decisions Act, 1992”, that is free and available for download here.
Documents relevant to Power of Attorney and Guardianship matters, such as blank Management Plans and Guardianship Plans, as well as the OPGT’s annual reports, are all available via Publications Ontario. All the OPGT’s documents on Publications Ontario are free to download in both English and French, and can be accessed here.
Powers of Attorney and Guardianship matters can be confusing and difficult to navigate, but the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee’s resources are great place to start.