This is likely the only section that could be filled out in pen! (Past biographical history doesn’t usually change)
Legal certificates (birth, marriage, death) require parental information. It is surprising how many people do not know birthplaces of parents when those certificates are being completed.
Each province or state has its own laws, terminology, and scope in documents bestowing decision-making powers for financial and personal care matters. Be sure to learn the name, scope and limitations of documents applicable in your jurisdiction. The phrase ‘designated decision-maker ’ is a generic term used in widely, but for purposes of this manual the term Personal Representative (PR) will be used to include power of attorney (POA), medical representative or executor. Substitute your own terms if you wish.
Selecting (and being) a PR is to be undertaken with careful thought. The role of a PR (POA, Health Care Decision Maker etc) can be very complex and is much like a ‘job’ – only unpaid (usually). If a Public Trustee is enlisted, there are monthly fees to pay – family and friends are often expected to do it ‘pro bono’. Find good references for your jurisdiction that detail the activities and role of being another’s representative, then ensure the person(s) you select are competent, knowledgeable and have the time – then your best interests will be served.
Include any details that will make finding extra information easy. If you do not wish to enter security data here, be sure to keep your PR updated as to location of keys, computer access etc.
Military service records and numbers are important because of benefits that may be available for your care, beneficiaries etc. Include more details of these benefits if known.
Ensure that your PR (s) know that the designation entitles the PR to act alone, act as either / or (co-PR), or as alternate. Your PR is the person to know the whereabouts of this manual, perhaps even have a copy of the completed forms. A review with your PR of ‘your life’ contained herein is recommended at least every couple of years, so that your thoughts and wishes can be represented by your PR to your best advantage.