Who has the right to make burial decisions once a principal is deceased?
- Wills and Estates
- State: AZ #19708
can decisions made concerning funeral and burial dispositions by the agent be changed by a spouse after death of principal ?
Your questions uses the terms "agent" and "principal". Typically those terms relate to the relationship established by a power of attorney. A "principal"-"agent" relationship is a relationship in which one person has legal authority to act for another.
A power of attorney is an instrument containing an authorization for one to act as the agent of the principal that terminates at some point in the future either by its terms or by operation of law such as death of the principal or agent.
Therefore, the death of the principal usually cancels any authority an agent may have had pursuant to a power of attorney.
Decisions regarding burial and/or funeral arrangements are typically declared by a person in his or her Last Will and Testament. There usually are provisions in the Will for an executor who is given the power (after approved by the probate court) to execute the wishes of the deceased. Any heir who was not named as the executor, even a spouse, would not have the authority to make arrangements if the Will granted that power to someone else as executor.
If the person died without a will (died intestate), the decisions regarding burial would most likely fall upon the deceased's spouse or children if not survived by a spouse.
Please see the information at the following links:
11/19/2009 - Category: Wills and Estates - State: AZ #19708
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