Texas Medical Power of Attorney for Adult Children

So, your child is turning 18…

Now that your child is 18, you may be preparing to send him or her off to college.  Everyone is excited about the future and the endless possibilities.  But, have you planned for your child’s legal needs?  This is not a concern many people consider for a young adult.
After all, since I am paying for tuition, the school will tell me anything I need to know, right?  Probably not.
Parents of college-aged children should consider a Texas Medical Power of Attorney for Children and a HIPAA Release.

HIPAA Releases

Let’s say your son is now an adult.  As an adult, he can vote, join the military, get married, consent or refuse medical treatment.  All of this without your input or permission. Under a federal law called the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (“HIPAA”) the medical centers and hospitals are not supposed to tell the parents about the child’s medical status.  As an adult, your child has medical privacy rights under HIPAA, and her doctors are prohibited from disclosing anything to you or anyone else without prior written consent from your child.

As your child prepares to leave home, you should arrange to have HIPAA releases signed so that the college medical centers and any hospital can discuss your child’s medical records with you.  Without it, you may be left in the dark.  A HIPAA release, however, frees medical professionals from liability for disclosure of private medical records so that you may be kept informed.

Texas Medical Power of Attorney

What about consenting to or approving medical treatment?  If your child is in a condition where he is unable to communicate and unable to approve medical treatment options, a HIPAA release alone is not enough.  Your child needs a Medical Power of Attorney.  This will designate who may make necessary decisions where your child is unable to do so.  You may encourage your child to list you as his agent in his Medical Power of Attorney, so that you can make medical decisions on his behalf while he’s unable.
Consider who should be listed as the primary agent and who, if anyone, should be listed as an alternate.  An alternate agent will be able to make decisions if the primary agent is unavailable.
These are just a couple of examples of the documents your child should have upon reaching age 18.  There are additional documents that may be beneficial.  While it may seem strange to have a Texas Medical Power of Attorney for Children and a HIPAA Release, these are important documents regardless of whether your child is headed to college or anywhere else.
Contact our Texas estate planning law office and let us consult with you and your family about proper legal planning for your child’s immediate and long term future.


Free Consultation

To ask a legal question or get legal help from Texas wills and Texas trust and wills lawyer Isaac Shutt, use the online contact form to the right or call (214) 302-8197. If you prefer to meet at the office in person in Richardson, Texas – the probate and estate planning attorneys will gladly offer a free consultation.

Visit www.ShuttLawFirm.com for more information on a Texas Medical Power of Attorney for Children, Texas HIPAA Releases, how to get a Texas last will and testament, cost for a trust in Texas, or any other question for the estate planning attorney, contact Richardson, TX Wills Attorney Isaac Shutt at ishutt@shuttlawfirm.com.

Shutt Law Firm’s office is conveniently located just north of Dallas, TX and just South of Plano, Texas. The law office is near the intersection of highway 75 and Campbell Road in Richardson, TX.


You can also call Mr. Shutt at (214) 302-8197 for more information on the topic discussed in this article or to discuss a different legal matter. For existing clients, quick phone-calls and brief e-mails are always free at Shutt Law Firm PLLC.

Please consider the Shutt Law Firm if you need Dallas Estate Attorneys serving Richardson, Plano, Allen, McKinney, Garland, Addison, TX, Collin County, Dallas County, Tarrant County, or surrounding North Texas area.


DISCLAIMER: Nothing in this brief article constitutes legal advice. The information provided herein is merely provided in the spirit of education. If you have a legal question, you should consult an attorney for your specific legal situation. Further, nothing in this article shall be construed to have started an attorney-client relationship. No such relationship exists until both you and attorney Isaac Shutt sign an engagement letter with the Shutt Law Firm, PLLC.

Probate Attorney, Wills Lawyer, and Guardianship Attorney By Isaac Shutt