Getting Power of Attorney (POA) over someone is a simple process as long as you get all of your bases covered and understand what needs to be put in the POA. A power of attorney allows a person to make different types of decisions in the event another named person cannot decide for themselves. One of the most common reasons for someone to get a power of attorney is deployment or mental health. This allows someone to act on their behalf with their finances while they are overseas. The other reason is if a person is mentally unstable, and the doctor declares that they are unable to make financial or life decisions, then someone usually in the family or a close friend will have the power of attorney over that person.
The first thing to do is write it out. In a power of attorney, both parties will want to agree on what they want included in it. It can be anything from one account to a full power of attorney. If you are wanting the power of attorney for one particular case such as signing a document to file taxes that would be considered a special power of attorney. This means that a person only has the power of attorney for that situation only.
The next thing is to have both parties view the final document. This can be done with a mediator, a third party present or a lawyer. This isn't necessary but is something to consider when you are either getting or giving someone's power of attorney.
Next you will want to decide if you want to get it final by a lawyer or somewhere that can do a notary. The notary only verifies the person's signatures. This basically means it is a legal document and may hold up in court, but the specifics of the document is solely up to the individual. If there is anything in the document that you are not comfortable with, then do not add it. Always type everything out and don't leave any blanks.
If you choose to use a lawyer, you will need to go and sign the document in front of him or her. The power of attorney may hold up more grounds in a court, since the lawyer will be the witness. Many times if a person is trying to obtain a power of attorney over someone who is medically and mentally unstable, then a lawyer is necessary.
The last thing to remember to do is put the document somewhere safe. The power of attorney is very important, and you don't want to lose it or misplace it. It is best to put it in a filing cabinet with a key or a safe. This will help keep it safe and handy so when you do need it.
Some things to remember when it comes to having or giving a power of attorney are:
- Only give a power of attorney to someone you trust. Once a decision is made it can't be reversed.
- Only give them power of attorney for something you want them to handle. If the person puts you in debt, you are still responsible for it.
- Only give a power of attorney when absolutely necessary.
- Keep the document in a safe, secure location.
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