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Power of Attorney

Wednesday, 04 June 2014 08:06

 

    Creating a Power of Attorney is very simple and has plenty of benefits and advantages. This legal document allows you to give authorization to an individual, known as an agent (or attorney-in-fact), to mange your property and finances.  The agent can take care of everyday tasks on your behalf while you are away or unable to do so yourself.  It can last for a limited time and then expire or even a lifetime if you prefer.  If “durable,” this legal document allows the appointed individual to handle your property and finances if you were to ever become incapacitated or incompetent. 

It would then only be acknowledged until your death, at which time it would immediately become void.  If you are thinking of creating a Durable Power of Attorney, it is best to consult with a lawyer to ensure you fully understand the terms and conditions as well as the advantages and disadvantages of this legal document.

 


    When preparing a Durable Power of Attorney, initially think of the specific tasks you would like the agent to manage.  The agent can sign documents on your behalf, deposit, withdraw or conduct other banking transactions.  You can appoint your agent to file your taxes or even file for and collect Medical or SSI on your behalf.  Additionally, you can authorize your agent to sign contracts when buying a car or even a house.  An agent can’t perform what is not authorized in a Durable Power of Attorney, such as authorizing gifts to himself or others.   otherwise.  Your appointed agent can manage your finances and property for a specific time, for a limited purpose or for a lifetime.  Once you have determined the specific “powers” that your agent will manage you must decide on who your appointed agent shall be.


     This appointed person should be someone you completely trust.  Depending on the specified tasks you have appointed your agent to perform, the agent may have access to your accounts or even be able to sell your property.  Limited court supervision can be an advantage of having a Durable Power of Attorney but can quickly become a disadvantage if the agent is abusing his powers.  It is critical that you appoint a trustworthy individual to manage your finances and property.  Fortunately, if you are unhappy with the agent’s performance, so long as you are of sound mind, you can revoke the “powers” at anytime.  If you become unable to manage your affiars and you do not have a Durable Power of Attorney, a court may appoint and supervise a conservator to manage your financial affiars.  This process can be costly, time consuming, and is also open to the public.  It would be a great idea to invest ahead of time in a Durable Power of Attorney rather then become vulnerable to the expensive and often unpredictable court process.


    If you are thinking of having a Durable Power of Attorney or would like more information give us a call to set up a consultation at the Law Offices of Gloria D. Cordova, Inc. Then you can learn more of the advantages of this legal instrument. To set up your consultation call 909.612.5787 or learn more by visiting our Estate Planning  page at http://www.gcordovalaw.com/estate-planning. You can also follow us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/gcordovalaw?ref=hl.

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