What is a Power of Attorney?
A Power of Attorney (POA) is a legal document giving the executor the power to act on behalf of your wishes. It gives them legal authority to move assets, allocate possessions and be present when the principal can’t. The document can either give broad or limited legal authority based on your circumstances and wishes. It is often used when the principal becomes ill or is unable to sign important documents.
What is the Difference between a Broad and a Limited POA?
A broad POA allows the agent acting on behalf of the principal to deal with all matters including bank accounts, selling of assets, allocation of belongs and so forth. A limited POA only allows the agent power to complete specific requirements such as dealing with bank accounts and can be limited to a certain period of time.
How does a Power of Attorney Work?
When completing a Power of Attorney, you need to make sure you use the right type of document as requirements can change depending on your state. To ensure you use the right document, speak to a lawyer who specialises in family law. Within the document, you appoint someone to look after your affairs and define their responsibilities, duties and limitations. When choosing an agent, be sure to choose wisely as they will have a large responsibility.
How to write a Valid POA
Although detail may differ, your Power of Attorney should be completed in the following manner:
- Put it in writing – This will avoid arguments in the future
- Use the correct format – There are a variety of POA you can write with different powers. Make sure to fill all the requirements of your state with the POA that best suits your needs and circumstances.
- Identify the Agent – Be sure to clearly define your agent and their authority
- Delegate powers – Whether the POA is broad or limited, wishes must be clearly specified
- Make it Legal and Binding – The POA must be signed and have 2 witnesses
- Record it – An essential part of ensuring the document is actionable in the future
- File it – Make sure the document is kept in a safe space with your lawyer for implementation
Writing a Will and ensuring it is actionable with a Power of Attorney can be a difficult and confusing task. Speaking with a lawyer in your state will make sure the document covers all necessary aspects and is actionable when you pass away.
In need of a lawyer in Brisbane? Speak with our experienced family law experts to get yours started today.