How To Get Power Of Attorney

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“A power of attorney (POA) document is important for aging. However, this is different, as the scope of a POA can play a critical role in various scenarios. It is best to safeguard its principal’s interests irrespective of age.”

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How To Get Power Of Attorney

If you plan to appoint someone as your POA, this blog is for you. Keep reading to know every crucial detail about POA. 


What is a power of attorney (POA) document?

Simply put, a power of attorney (POA) document is a legal document of authority. This authority is from one person, known as the ‘principal,’ to another, called the ‘agent,’ granting him the power to take certain actions or decisions on the principal’s behalf.

Generally, such decisions are concerned with the principal’s legal, business, wealth, and medical subjects.


When is appointing a power of attorney (POA) deemed appropriate?

The most common instances of appointing a POA happen when the principal is aging. Due to this reason, such people might become more vulnerable to losing their ability or confidence to make sound-minded decisions.

Appointing a power of attorney in such cases can greatly help such people abstain from making unfit decisions, the consequences of which may impact their well-being.

Besides this, a POA document becomes quite valuable and sometimes a way to avail of an opportunity in a few other cases. In such scenarios, the principal needs to be more capable of evaluating the probable results of their decisions. The principal is perfectly fit both mentally and physically.

For example, a principal may authorize a real estate agent to purchase or sell some property without himself being physically present at the event.

Similarly, a parent may assign a guardian under a POA to look after their minor-age children in case of the principal’s (parent) absence.


Types of Power of Attorney

A power of attorney document will vary according to the purpose and circumstances of each case. Therefore, based on this diversification of matters to which it can be applied, there are five types of power of attorney.

  1. General POA
  2. Durable POA
  3. Non-Durable POA
  4. Special or Limited POA
  5. Springing Power of Attorney

These types explain when a POA becomes enforceable or revocable in the event of the principal becoming or not becoming incapacitated.


General power of attorney

As the name suggests, a general power of attorney can include the authority to make decisions regarding multiple and many interests of the principal. For example, looking after day-to-day affairs, children’s education, etc.

Such power of attorney becomes invalid when the principal cancels the POA, becomes incapacitated, or passes away.


A durable power of attorney

A durable power of attorney also gives the authority to look after the vast affairs of the principal. Such POA is not governed by a fixed period and would not be revoked even if the principal dies.

A durable power of attorney is exercisable when the principal becomes incapacitated or cannot look after his affairs.


Non-Durable power of attorney

A non-durable POA is a limited-time authority granted to an agent to fulfill any particular task or transaction.

Such power of attorney will automatically expire once its intended objective is accomplished.


Special or limited power of attorney

The example of appointing a real estate agent in the beginning paragraphs of this article is a case of special or limited power of attorney.

Such POA is usually for carrying out one-time business, banking, or financial nature transactions on behalf of the principal because the principal is unable to do so due to their other commitments.

These power of attorney documents also clearly mention the exact scope of the POA regarding what an agent can and cannot do on the principal’s behalf. In such cases, an agent is exactly transacting as if the principal was present on the spot to do the same.

Under the special or limited power of attorney, an agent cannot, in any case, unless approved by the principal, alter the existing rights granted to him.


Springing power of attorney

A springing POA is an enforceable document when a certain condition is met. Examples of such conditions can be the principal becoming incapacitated or the occurrence of any other contingent event.


Power of attorney records

Remember that a POA is only valid when it is in written form. Any verbal communication between two persons who are a principal and an agent will not constitute a valid or enforceable POA.

A written POA document is enforceable and acceptable in all the states of the US. However, the rules and requirements of POA may vary from state to state.

Depending on your state or the institution you are dealing with, such as your bank, you might be provided with a standard draft format or form of how the POA should be like.

Once you have formally drafted or filled in the details on the prescribed POA form, get it witnessed and notarized.

After this, a copy of the POA should be made available to every concerned person, including the agent, while the original POA stays with the principal.

Unless a POA is related to real estate, it can be submitted in court or other relevant government offices to become effective.

To cancel a power of attorney, you should serve a written notice to the agent, every concerned person, the court, and the government office if the case may be.


POA responsibilities


POA responsibilities


Aside from the responsibilities entrusted through the POA, an agent also has the following responsibilities –

  • Carefully read the POA document to understand the responsibilities that the principal has assigned you fully. In case of any ambiguities, ask the principal or his lawyer or consult your lawyer to understand better what may be bothering you.
  • If the POA involves the right to access legal or other important documents, ask the principal to either provide them in advance as originals or copies or make arrangements for their prompt availability if and when needed.
  • Take measures to ensure that your assigned duties are honored rightfully and in the principal’s best interest.


How to get power of attorney?

As a power of attorney is responsible for many legal tasks, you must decide wisely. You must look for someone trustworthy and reliable enough to fulfill all the duties. The agent you hire should be capable enough to handle your affairs when you cannot do so. Once you have hired the ideal and the most responsible POA, it is time to decide what tasks to assign them. It depends on you to what extent duties you wish to give to your attorney and in what circumstances they will take action.

Anyone above eighteen can set up an attorney depending upon the circumstances. While seeking an answer on how to get a power of attorney, you might come across various explanations and limitations. Moreover, the POAs differ according to your state and the responsibilities you want to assign to them. Every state has its requirements for hiring power of attorney. Therefore, you must choose one adequately aware of the state’s legal rules and conditions. 


What are the requirements and limitations while setting up a Power of Attorney?

While setting up a power of attorney, various questions might pop up in your mind, including whether you need a lawyer to get a power of attorney. These questions are general if you are looking for a power of attorney. Hiring a lawyer while setting up a POA is not legally mandatory. But consider it if you are planning on giving high responsibilities and powers to the attorney. The lawyer will provide legal advice before you put any complicated duties on the POA. 

Moreover, the attorney also helps ensure that your appointed POA can take on all the responsibilities. The financial and business obligations and ensure they are aware of the issues if power invokes. The lawyer also questions the POA to learn if they know the state’s legal rules and requirements. The POAs have to face certain limitations as well. For example, the POA can only operate when the principal has total capacity. 


What are the drawbacks of not having a power of attorney?

POAs help you in various ways, from protecting your finances and real estate interests and making good decisions for your health. These decisions are made when you are mentally or physically unfit to do them alone. They can also protect your manner of dying. Your family must deal with costly and time-consuming trials if you don’t have a POA. But the people can appoint the POA, and only the court can do it.

If a person becomes mentally unfit to set up a POA, neither close relatives nor friends can appoint the POA on their behalf. In such a case, the court appoints the guardian or conservator that helps set the POA that will take over the affairs of the unfit person. No one can interfere in the person’s matters when the POA is established. So, setting up a POA when you are stable will save your family from ugly situations. Even when you die, your POA will justly distribute your assets according to your instructions. 


What are the rights of the POA?

A power of attorney has the right to make important life decisions on behalf of the principal. POA is often the agent, while the person who sets them up is called the principal. The principal set up the POA through the legal procedure and appointed his specific duties and responsibilities. Therefore, considering this, the POA has various power of attorney rights and limitations, which can also be termed duties. 

Some of the rights of a power of attorney are listed below;

  • The right to make financial decisions on behalf of the principal. These include personal or business-related issues.
  • To buy or sell property on behalf of the principal.
  • The right to make healthcare decisions and hire appropriate doctors for the principal.
  • To open bank accounts or purchase life insurance policies for the principal.
  • The right to open a lawsuit or sign the necessary legal documents on behalf of the principal.
  • To make appropriate living arrangements according to the health of the principal. 
  • The right to receive various income forms on behalf of the principal.


What are the limitations of the POA?

Although the POAs manage many of your legal affairs, there are certain limitations that you should take care of. Some of the regulations are:

  • It cannot take any legal decisions after the death of the principal.
  • Power of attorney cannot transfer the responsibilities to any other agent.
  • It doesn’t have the right to work against the principal’s interests.
  • It must keep the will and make amendments in real estate planning.



The practicality of life is that it is highly unpredictable. And this does not only mean any unforeseen event that may cause death. So, appointing the right person as your power of attorney at the right point in your life is always advisable. Having a trustworthy person caring for your interests brings peace of mind. So, what are you waiting for? Get your POA set up today!