A lot of people aren’t really sure what a power of attorney is or how it works. There are quite a few myths and misconceptions surrounding these documents, many of which can be harmful or prevent people from using these documents to their fullest capacities. Let’s take a look at a few misconceptionss surrounding powers of attorney and how they work.
Myth 1: Only An Attorney Can Have Power of Attorney
This term “power of attorney” does not in any way require you to have a lawyer. When you create a power of attorney, what you do is create a legal document which gives a person of your choosing the right to take certain actions as if you were doing those actions yourself. The person you choose, called an attorney-in-fact or an agent, can be anyone you wish, and there is no requirement that you select a lawyer to act in this capacity.
Myth 2: Once I Create a Power of Attorney I Lose My Rights
Wrong. A power of attorney lasts as long as the person who creates it chooses. This person, known as a principal, sets the terms of the power of attorney and can revoke it at any time. If you choose to create what is known as a durable power of attorney, you choose someone who can act for you should you lose your ability to make choices. While you cannot revoke a durable power while you are incapacitated, you can revoke it as soon as you regain your ability to make decisions.
Latest posts by Raymond German, Estate Planning Attorney (see all)
- When Retirement Means Caring for Your Aging Parents - February 20, 2020
- 5 Steps in Long-Term Care Planning - February 18, 2020
- Reasons an Estate Plan Could Be Challenged: Part 4 – Lack of Testamentary Capacity - February 13, 2020