What is a Power of Attorney?
A power of attorney is a legal document that grants power to somebody else to make decisions for you on a financial and legal basis so they can manage your bank account, your investments, real estate that you might own and make other important legal decisions. This is a document that needs to be prepared by a lawyer and it’s an essential part of an estate plan.
So what happens if you don’t have a power of attorney?
If you don’t have a power of attorney then in the event that you become incapable of physically or mentally managing your affairs, then nobody will be able to make those decisions on your behalf.
Even your spouse or your child.
In that event, your next of kin would need to make a court application. They would need to go to court and have a committee appointed to make those decisions and that is an expensive and time-consuming process. They would also need to get two affidavits from medical doctors verifying the fact that you are mentally and physically incapable of managing your affairs. People often think that just because they have a joint bank account or have a joint tenancy on their property that the person they are joint with (usually their spouse) will be able to manage their affairs, and that is simply not the case.
It’s essential to have either a power of attorney or a court order issued by the court in order to make those decisions. So when you create your power of attorney, it’s helpful to name, not only somebody as a primary attorney but also somebody as an alternate in the event that your primary attorney is unable or unwilling
to act when the time comes.
So if you have any questions about getting a power of attorney, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
You can drop a comment below.
It’s not an expensive legal document to produce and it’s an essential part of your future planning.
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