Estate Planning Lawyer
A power of attorney is a document on which you appoint someone to act in your place in a certain situation. When you plan your estate, you’ll typically name a power of attorney. Before you do, you should understand the four powers of attorney you could name.
Limited Power of Attorney
Say you go out of the country for a few months while your home is on the market. What happens if someone makes an offer and is ready to move ahead with the home purchase, but you’re not there to sign any of the paperwork? That is where a limited power of attorney comes in handy. A limited power of attorney is a document allowing someone you appoint to act in your place for a specific purpose and a limited amount of time. The document will typically state the end period for this power, such as the day you return home from spending time abroad, for example.
General Power of Attorney
When you need someone to help you manage your finances or other legal issues while you’re alive and well, you could create a general power of attorney to name an attorney-in-fact. This person has the right to pay your bills, sign documents on your behalf and conduct other financial transactions. If you become incapacitated, the general power of attorney becomes void. It also voids at the time of your death. You can rescind the power before it becomes void as well, such as if the attorney-in-fact betrays your trust or you simply don’t feel the need to have one anymore.
Durable Power of Attorney
A trusted Memphis, TN estate planning lawyer like one from Patterson Bray, would advise that if you become incapacitated, you’ll want someone you trust to make certain decisions for you. A durable power of attorney appoints that person. This document comes into effect upon signing and stays in effect after you are incapacitated. It is void at the time of your death. You can also rescind it before incapacitation.
Springing Power of Attorney
A springing power of attorney is similar to a durable power of attorney. The difference is it doesn’t come into effect until the time you are incapacitated. Your document should state quite clearly what you regard as being incapacitated, as you wouldn’t want someone else to start making decisions for you when you feel you can do so yourself.
Determining Your Powers of Attorney
You can name multiple powers of attorney because each type plays a different role in your life. You can also just name one person to fill all roles. Whatever you decide, get an estate lawyer on your side to help you put the paperwork together.