How Much Power Does Your Power of Attorney Actually Have?
A major illness or a car accident can leave you incapacitated to the point where you cannot carry on your daily affairs. If someone is disabled to the point where they cannot manage their financial affairs, someone else can be granted the power to make financial decisions for that individual. A person appointed Power of Attorney over another person has the right to manage that incapacitated individual’s financial affairs. This article provides a brief overview about what being appointed Power of Attorney really means and how it works. This way you are ready if you ever decide to appoint someone to oversee your financial affairs.
A Power of Attorney document allows you to grant someone, in a healthy state of mind, the ability to carry out your financial business (this can include looking after your daily financial affairs, your business accounts, properties in your name, etc.). A Power of Attorney takes effect while you are alive and in the event that you are either mentally or physically unfit to make financial, business and other property-related decisions on your own behalf. The person representing you is known as your “Attorney”. The “Donor” is the person (while in good physical and mental health) creating the Power of Attorney. If, in the event of mental or physical decline, the “Donor” is unable to make rational decisions on their own behalf, the “Attorney” takes over for the “Donor” and oversees those financial responsibilities. The “Attorney” does not have to be a lawyer.
A Power of Attorney created using FormalWill.ca’s proprietary technology includes broad powers to cover a wide-range of matters such as: allowing an Attorney to deal with your banking, financial affairs, real estate, and handling any other financial matters on your behalf.
The traditional process of appointing an “Attorney” may involve getting the original document signed and notarized. It is also common for for yourself, your “Attorney” and all parties involved to have signed copies of the document.
Acting In Your Best Interests
A Power of Attorney document needs to be drafted in the right way to ensure that you are protected, and the person to whom power of attorney is given to needs to be chosen very carefully. No matter if the “Attorney” you select is a family member, an institution or a lawyer, you require a person who knows how to look out for your wellbeing, vested interests and the things you value.
During your selection process, ensure that the “Attorney” you choose can demonstrate how they will keep accurate records of any financial transactions performed on your behalf. If you will not be able to monitor transactions yourself, you may want to utilize a third party for maximum security and transparency.
If there are any suspicions that your “Attorney” is behaving in a way that goes against your wishes, that person can be reported to the police. Depending on your jurisdiction, the person who has power of attorney can be held accountable for any intentional misconduct.
In order for a Power of Attorney document to be legally accepted you must be deemed mentally competent at the time the document is created and signed. Our proprietary technology produces you to create a Power of Attorney that gives broad powers to cover a range of financial and business matters, including: managing real estate, maintaining insurance and acting upon many other financial matters on your behalf.
When Does a Power of Attorney End?
As long as one remains mentally competent the Power of Attorney can be nullified or changed by formally revising the document, in writing. Without doing so, the authority of a Power of Attorney shall continue indefinitely unless it includes a specified end date.