Everything you wanted to know about a Power of Attorney is listed below for your use. Feel free to call our power of attorney lawyer to discuss your individual case.
Requirements of Setting Up the Power of Attorney
The person who wants to give the power is called the Principal. The person who receives the power is called the Agent or Attorney in Fact. In order for the Power of Attorney to work, the Principal must be competent at the time of creation of the power. The Agent must also be competent at the time he or she starts to act as the agent. The document itself also sets up the time when the power goes into effect. Some Power of Attorney documents go into effect immediately. Other Power of Attorneys will start to work only when the Principal has become incapacitated.
In summary, look to see if the following requirements for the power of attorney are met:
- Competency of Principal at execution or signing of the power of attorney.
- Competency of the Agent at the time he or she starts to act.
- Time set in the Power of Attorney document or form when the power starts to work.
What if the Power of Attorney delays its effectiveness until there is incapacity?
Incapacity is usually defined in the instrument itself. If it is not, it can be determined by a certification by one or two doctors. It is important to look to see if the form itself has a definition.
If there are two power of attorney documents which are competing, the later one governs, unless it can be shown that it was invalid at the time of execution or signing of the power of attorney.
How to open an account when you are named as an agent under a power of attorney?
The account should read as follows:
Agent’s name, as Agent under a Power of Attorney for Principal.
Joe Smith, Agent under a Power of Attorney for John Smith.
Banks will accept any variation of the above on the account or may shorten it.
The social security number of the principal is used at the bank.
You must keep the assets of the principal separate from the assets of the agent. The agent should not use the assets of the principal to benefit the agent unless the document so authorizes specifically.
If you doubt that the power of attorney will work, you should consult and attorney about a conservatorship.
Call us to discuss your Power of Attorney needs or a conservatorship with our lawyer and attorney. Call 818.340.4479 to talk to the friendly staff at Sirkin Law Group, P.C.