What is a power of attorney? Most people have heard this phrase used before. But do you know what a power of attorney is and what they are used for? Do you have one? Do you need to have one? There are many questions and we hope to have some of your answers.
A power of attorney (POA) is your legal representative. This is somebody that you authorize to act on your behalf if you are unable to. If you are out of the country, incapacitated or in some way otherwise unable to speak for yourself, the POA can do it for you. The POA has the legal right to sign your name.
This means they will also have the legal right to sign you up to contracts, loans and more. The POA should also be someone that you trust and is usually a spouse. There are different types of POA’s but they all work to delegate power to someone else. The person you choose as your POA can make legal, financial and property decisions on your behalf.
You can choose to have your POA written up giving the person full authority or giving them limited authority. You need to consider your needs in having a POA and who the person will be to help you decide what type of POA will be best for you.
There are three basic types of power of attorney; "Nondurable," "Durable," and "Springing" Power of Attorney. The nondurable will begin immediately and will be in affect until you revoke it or you die or become incapacitated. The springing POA will be in place to begin in the event that you are mentally ill or physically unable to speak or act on your behalf.
You may want to speak to a lawyer to help you determine the type of POA that is right for you and your situation.