Acting under a Planning Document

  • Recorded on: November 15, 2022

  • Length: 60 minutes


If you've been named under a power of attorney or a representation agreement to help a loved one make decisions, Andrea Frisby, Samantha Russell, and Cari Borenko answer common questions about your rights and responsibilities as an attorney or representative. Learn what you need to know to carry out your responsibilities, how to best support your loved one, and how to navigate often conflicting input from others.


In this webinar, you will learn:

  • What a power of attorney is and the powers it gives an attorney. [3:10]

  • What a representation agreement is and the powers it gives a representative. [5:50]

  • How to know if you have been given power to make medical decisions under a representation agreement. [8:10]

  • When you can start making decisions for someone with dementia, as their representative under a representation agreement (such as moving them into a care home). [11:45]

  • The steps an attorney must take to give effect to a power of attorney made two decades before. [15:05]

  • How to become an attorney under a power of attorney for someone who has had a stroke and is unable to read or sign their name to documents. [19:40]

  • What an attorney can do if they’re concerned they will lose capacity to act or be outlived by the person who named them as an attorney under a power of attorney. [25:10]

  • The difference between personal care decisions and health care decisions. [28:00]

  • How to prepare to make decisions under a representation agreement. [30:55]

  • What to do if a bank refuses to recognize a section 7 representation agreement. [32:25]

  • What to do if a family member or health care professional disagrees with a decision you make as a representative under a representation agreement. [34:40]

  • What to do if a bank says they will accept an enduring power of attorney only with a letter confirming cognitive decline. [37:45]

  • How an attorney named under a power of attorney can deal with selling a home for the person who named them, when the home is occupied by a relative who refuses to leave. [39:45]

  • Whether decisions made under a representation agreement can be made by the whole family. [42:05]

  • What powers an alternate power of attorney and representative has to take over when the primary attorney named in the power of attorney has been abusive. [44:55]

  • How to determine when someone is no longer capable of making decisions for themselves. [47:10]

  • Whether an attorney named under a power of attorney has legal authority to sell real property. [49:45]

  • Whether there’s a way for a representative under a representation agreement to get paid. [51:20]

  • How to balance your loved one’s autonomy against the need for checks and balances. [52:35]

  • Whether upcoming changes to medical assistance in dying laws will affect a representative’s role. [53:50]


Andrea Frisby

Andrea Frisby

Andrea focuses her practice on assisting clients with estate and trust planning and administration. She prepares wills, trust documents, powers of attorney and representation agreements for clients, and also provides legal advice on estate and trust administration. Andrea has authored numerous papers in the areas of wills, estate, trusts and capacity issues and is a frequent speaker on these topics. She has completed the Society of Trusts and Estate Practitioners (STEP) Diploma achieving a distinction across all four examinations, and has her TEP designation.

Samantha Russell

Samantha Russell

Samantha is a member of the trusts, estates and estate planning practice group at Legacy Tax & Trust Lawyers. After receiving her law degree from the University of Victoria, she was called to the bar in British Columbia in 2019. Samantha assists clients with preparing wills, powers of attorney, representation agreements, trusts and other estate planning related documents. She also provides executors with practical advice on how to administer estates, and prepares applications for probate or administration.

Cari Borenko

Cari Borenko

Since 2006, Cari has been the regional lead of the Advance Care Planning (ACP) program at Fraser Health Authority in British Columbia. She is the author of chapters in multiple works on advance care planning, is a Clinical Instructor at UBC Department of Medicine, and is an appointed member of ACP-international and National ACP Task Group. Her unwavering upstream ACP vision has helped support and influence the implementation of ACP programs provincially, nationally and internationally. Cari is proud to be leading a trail-blazing ACP team with a focus on systems-level implementation.

Attendee feedback

“I thought this was a fantastic webinar. I was impressed with the presenters and with the questions people asked. These are often difficult topics.”

“The session is packed with LOTS of good information. … THANK YOU and WITH GREAT APPRECIATION for putting this together.”

“This subject was presented very well and I appreciate you keeping to the time of one hour.”

“Appreciative for the responsive, easy to comprehend direction. Thank you to all involved in this production.”

“All of you ladies are wonderful! I wish I could have seen this discussion ten years ago! But it certainly will help for my affairs. THANK YOU ALL VERY MUCH!”

“I really appreciate receiving links to the recordings afterwards, so that I can re-listen.”

Additional resources

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