The Physician’s Certificate of Competency serves multiple purposes:
(1) Validate a Power of Attorney
Nevada law states that if the person is in a “Hospital, assisted living facility or facility for skilled nursing” at the time of signing a power of attorney, they will need a certification of competency from a “physician, psychologist or psychiatrist” attached to the power of attorney.
(2) Mitigate Issues of Undue Influence.
Oftentimes, when a person is diagnosed with an illness that may affect their judgment, they are presumed to lack the mental capacity to understand the documents they signed. A Physician’s certificate of competency obtained on or closely before their signing the document will do a lot to combat that presumption.
(3) Determine Whether a Person Needs a Guardian Appointed
If a doctor, psychologist or psychiatrist is unwilling to sign this certificate because the person, in fact, lacks capacity, their family member will likely need to obtain a guardianship instead of a power of attorney. A guardianship conveys a lot of the rights and responsibilities of a power of attorney, but it also requires a court order and court supervision.