Learn More About Power of Attorney

What is Power of Attorney?

A power of attorney gives a person, appointed by you, the legal ability to act in your place in matters of financial and personal purposes if ever you become unable to act on your own behalf. This power is given through documents that specify what powers the individual has, these powers can include:

  • Open bank accounts in their client’s name
  • Withdraw funds from said bank accounts
  • Pay bills in the stead of the client
  • Cash check in the name of the client

The Four Primary Power of Attorney Variants

Limited: This gives an individual the power to act in the stead of somebody else for a very specific purpose. A limited power of attorney could, for example, give somebody the legal ability to sign a deed to property for someone else if they are unable to do so. This power is often times limited to a time span specified in the document that gives the power of attorney to said individual.

General: This is a sweeping power of attorney that gives an *attorney-in-fact all the powers and rights that you have over your own assets. A general power of attorney gives the attorney-in-fact the right to sign documents in your stead, pay your bills, and conduct all financial transactions on your behalf. This power of attorney ends upon death or when rescinded by you.

Durable: A versatile power of attorney, that can be as broad or limited as needed and remains in effect after incapacitation and can only be rescinded while you are capable.

Springing: This form of power of attorney is similar to the durable variant, however, will only come into effect when/if you become incapacitated. The standard for determining incapacity (which triggers this power) should be very clearly laid out in the document itself.

*Agent with the power of attorney over another’s interests.