A power of attorney is an extremely important legal document that is essential for every adult to have. The demand and importance of it has specifically grown during the past year with the concerns regarding the coronavirus pandemic which has put everyone at a greater risk of falling ill. In such situations, handling legal and financial matters can not only be difficult, but also overwhelming. This is the reason why every adult should have one.
Most people ask the question regarding how to make power of attorney legal? A power of attorney (POA) is a record that permits you to delegate an individual or association to deal with your medical, property, or financial matters in the event that you become incapable to do so. Nonetheless, all power of attorneys are not made for the same sort of issue. Each type gives your attorney-in-fact (an individual who will settle on decisions on your behalf) an alternate degree of control.
To learn more about a power of attorney, keep on reading ahead.
Table of Contents
- 1 What Is A Power Of Attorney?
- 2 Types Of Power Of Attorney
- 3 What Is A General Power Of Attorney?
- 4 How To Make A Power Of Attorney Legal?
- 5 Power Of Attorney For Property
- 6 How To Go About A Power Of Attorney?
- 7 Power Of Attorney Sample
- 8 Conclusion
What Is A Power Of Attorney?
A power of attorney (POA) is an authoritative report giving one individual (the agent or attorney-in-fact) the ability to represent someone else (the principal). The agent can have expansive or restricted authority in the principal’s legal matters or decision making pertaining to property, accounts or healthcare. The power of attorney is habitually utilized in case of a principal’s ailment or incapacity, or when the principal is unable to be present to sign important legal papers regarding financial exchanges.
There are various reasons why a power of attorney can be terminated. It is either when the principal dies, the principal revokes it, a court refutes it, if the attorney-in-fact is the principal’s spouse and they file for a divorce, or if the attorney-in-fact can no longer carry out the responsibilities mentioned in the power of attorney.
Traditional power of attorneys slip by when something happens to the principal. However a ‘durable power of attorney’ stays in authority to empower the agent to deal with the principal’s matters. On the other hand, a ‘springing power of attorney’ comes into play only if and when the principal of the POA gets debilitated. A clinical or medical services power of attorney empowers a specialist to make medical decisions for a debilitated individual.
Types Of Power Of Attorney
There are various kinds of decisions that an agent has the authority to make.This includes:
- The power to make financial decisions
- The power to make decisions regarding monetary gifts
- The power to make decisions regarding healthcare
- The power to consent to providing, retaining , or stopping clinical treatments, services, or diagnostic procedures. (Note that the principal can also make a different “health care power of attorney” to give this specific authority to another individual.)
- The power to suggest a guardian
Mentioned below are the four different types of power of attorney, each with its own specific power:
General Power of Attorney.
In this circumstance, the attorney-in-fact can perform practically any act on behalf of the principal, for example, opening financial accounts and overseeing individual funds. A general power of attorney is ended when the principal gets crippled, abrogates the power of attorney or passes away.
Durable Power of Attorney.
This kind of power of attorney appoints another individual to make decisions on behalf of the principal. Moreover, it includes a durable clause that states that the power of attorney would still be active and valid even after the principal becomes incapacitated.
Special or Limited Power of Attorney.
In the case of a special or limited power of attorney, the agent has certain powers restricted to a particular area. For instance, a power of attorney that gives the attorney-in-fact power to sell a home or any other piece of property or real estate.
Springing Durable Power of Attorney.
Most states also offer a ‘springing power of attorney’ which comes into effect when a particular event occurs, for instance, when the principal becomes incapacitated.
What Is A General Power Of Attorney?
A general power of attorney gives a wide range of powers to an attorney-in-fact (who can either be an individual or a corporation) to act upon for your benefit. This power can pertain to taking care of money related transactions and business exchanges, purchasing life insurance, settling claims, working business premiums, making endowments, and utilizing proficient assistance.
General power of attorney is a powerful device in case you are out of town and require somebody to deal with specific issues, or when you are physically or mentally unequipped for dealing with your undertakings. A general power of attorney is regularly incorporated in an estate plan to ensure that somebody can deal with financial issues.
How To Make A Power Of Attorney Legal?
You should sign and authenticate the original power of attorney document, and ensure that you also certify a few duplicate copies of. Banks and other different corporations would not permit your attorney-in-fact to follow up on your behalf except if they get an affirmed duplicate copy of the power of attorney.
Keep in mind that you can nullify a power of attorney whenever you want. To do so, you would just have to inform your agent in a written, hard copy document and recover all duplicate copies of your power of attorney. If appropriate, tell any financial organization along with the County Clerk’s office, that your agent’s power of attorney has been renounced.
Requiring a power of attorney is nearly as sure as death and taxes are in everybody’s life. Sickness, injury, old age, or everyday life duties are a part of everyone’s life. It is critical to comprehend what a power of attorney is and how it can help with putting everything in order, even when you can’t.
Power Of Attorney For Property
A Power of Attorney for Property is a written document wherein you enable somebody to make decisions on your behalf about your property and accounts in the event that you become unfit to make these choices yourself. For instance, your Attorney for Property could be liable for dealing with your financial issues, dealing with your investments, maintaining your business, purchasing and selling land as your representative, or covering your monthly bills. The main thing that you cannot designate an attorney-in-fact to do is to compose your Will. In spite of the fact that the individual you appoint as your agent is called an ‘attorney’, it does not imply that they are your lawyer. Typically, an attorney-in-fact can be your partner, a family member, or a dear companion.
The various tasks that your agent can do rely completely upon how much authority you give them. You could give a general power of attorney for property that covers the entirety of your real estate and money related issues. Or then again, you could give a specific power of attorney for property that permits the lawyer to deal with just a portion of your undertakings. For instance, you could even restrict the power of attorney to a solitary real estate transaction while you are out of town.
You should plainly lay out what you are permitting your lawyer to do, and when you are permitting them to do it. For instance, frequently individuals wish to set up a power of attorney in situations where they become unfit to deal with specific things as they get older. If you just need your power of attorney to produce results sooner or later, or upon a particular event, you should unmistakably express this.
How To Go About A Power Of Attorney?
You can take the following steps when establishing a power of attorney:
- Put it in writing
- Use the correct format
- Identify the parties
- Delegate the powers
- Specify durability
- Notarize the power of attorney
- Record the power of attorney
- Make duplicate copies of the power of attorney
- File the original power of attorney and its copies
Power Of Attorney Sample
The sample and format of a power of attorney can easily be found on the internet. The following are a few things that you need to make sure to mention in order to make your power of attorney legal and authorized:
- The name of the principal
- Address of the principal
- State in which the principal lives
- Statement that revoke the previous power of attorney
- Name of the agent appointed by the principal
- Address of the agent
- State in which the agent lives
- Governing law
- Liability of the agent
- The date when the power of attorney will become effective and when it will end
- Powers of the agent
- Any other specific powers
- Agent compensation
- Co-owning of assets and mixing of funds
- Personal gain of the agents
- Restrictions on the agent
- Notice to third parties
- Witness statement
- Name of both the witnesses
- Signatures of both the witnesses
- Addresses of both the witnesses
- Notary acknowledgments
- Important information for the agent (agent’s duties, termination on agent’s authority, liability of agent)
- Agent’s certification as to the validity of the power of attorney and the agent’s authority
- A conclusive word from the principal the summarizes the terms and conditions of the power of attorney
- Final signatures and acknowledgements (agent’s signature date, agent’s name printed, agent’s address, agent’s telephone number
- Date, month and year
- Signature of the notary
- Expiration date of the commission
There are numerous valid justifications to make a power of attorney, as it guarantees that somebody will manage your financial undertakings in the event that you become debilitated. You ought to pick a trusted family member or companion, or a respectable and fair professional . However, you have to keep in mind that signing a power of attorney that awards a wide range of powers to an agent, is a lot like signing a bank cheque. So ensure that you pick your attorney-in-fact wisely and comprehend the laws that apply to the report.