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Power of Attorney

A power of attorney lets you give someone else the legal right to act for you. They will be able to act on behalf of you when you are unable to act or make decisions for yourself. The power of attorney can be a General Durable Power of Attorney or a Limited Power of Attorney. They can cover simple tasks like writing or signing checks or they can also involve more complex matters like selling land. You can limit a power of attorney to one task, like selling a car. Or, you can give your agent the power to do almost everything you can now do.

Going to a lawyer is the best way to get a power of attorney that fits your needs. You can give a power of attorney to any adult. Your agent does not have to be a lawyer. Choose someone you can trust and won’t abuse your financial resources. Their actions will be legally binding. It literally allows the agent to be “YOU.” However, a power of attorney can be revoked at any time, but requires notice in order for actions of the agent to be voided.

A medical power of attorney gives someone the right to make decisions on your health care. A financial power of attorney lets someone handle your money and property. To sell your land, the power of attorney must specifically give that right. A limited power of attorney lets someone do some specific things for you. A general power of attorney lets someone act pretty much like you. A durable power of attorney continues even after you become incapacitated. If you do not use the word "durable," a power ends when you become incapacitated. A springing power of attorney takes effect when something happens. Usually, it begins when you become incapacitated. You have to be very careful to spell out how someone can tell that the thing has happened, so the power is in effect. You can also combine them. For example, a limited, durable financial power of attorney would let your agent do specific financial tasks for you when you can't. This might include paying your bills and dealing with your bank. A durable medical power of attorney lets your agent make medical decisions for you when you can't make these decisions.



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