You can grant someone the “Power of Attorney” to act on your behalf. There can be a broad power of attorney or a narrowly defined power of attorney.
A powerful tool that can be dangerous
Granting a Power of Attorney can be very beneficial, but it also can be dangerous since it allows the person extensive control over your affairs and maybe your life. It should only be granted to someone you can completely trust to act in your best interests.
Some common uses of Power of Attorney:
- A Durable Power of Attorney lets someone take over your legal affairs. This is often used to give a trusted child the power to conduct a parents affairs, trusting they will not use it until necessary. Certain clauses can be added to control when it takes effect.
- A General Power of Attorney lets someone take over anything you might do for yourself. This would include accessing banking and other accounts, buying and selling property or any number of other transactions.
- A Medical Power of Attorney lets someone make medical decisions for you in the event you are incapable of making them yourself.
- A Special Power of Attorney can be very narrowly defined and allows someone to perform just one duty.
A Medical Power of Attorney is important
A common use of a Medical Power of Attorney is to allow a trusted person to make medical decisions when you are under anesthesia during an operation. They are also used for elderly parents who are suffering the debilitating effects related to diseases like Alzeimer's or dementia. A document that is often written at the same time is a "living will" or "Advanced Directive for Health Care," to help guide the person who gets the Power of Attorney.
You might grant a Special Power of Attorney:
- To someone overseeing your children on a trip to allow them to seek medical care should your child be injured.
- To someone to allow them to cash and deposit checks into an account if you are disabled
- To sell a piece of real estate, car, stock, or another type of possession.
A Power of Attorney may have an ending time built into it, or you can revoke a Power of Attorney at any time. If you have granted the Power of Attorney to someone and later wish to revoke it, you’ll want to send a notice to any place you believe the Power of Attorney has been used.
Get a free one-hour initial consultation
A Power of Attorney can be very useful, but can be dangerous if not well written. Call and talk with Attorney Brian Utsey before signing a Power of Attorney. His number is 480-538-5024.