When you need a power of attorney, it is a very serious document. It is a document that enables an agent, usually a family member or friend, to make financial decisions on your behalf. This person, called an agent, will be given access to your bank accounts and other assets, but the person has a fiduciary duty to act in your best interests, not theirs.
Whether you need a power of attorney is a question that often arises in the context of estate planning. Generally, people use powers of attorney as a way to give someone else the authority to handle their affairs if they become incapacitated or otherwise unavailable to do so on their own.
A lawyer who specializes in trusts and estates will be familiar with how to set up powers of attorney. A good lawyer will also be able to help you make sure that your documents are up-to-date and contain the appropriate language.
The most important thing to do when you get a power of attorney is to sign it and have it notarized. This makes it harder for a third party to challenge your signature. A good lawyer will be able to explain the specific requirements of your state and how you can best ensure that your power of attorney is valid.
You should also consider naming witnesses to the document and having them sign it in front of a notary public. These witnesses should be adults and be disinterested in the matter at hand. They should also be unrelated to the principal or agent by blood or marriage.
Another important thing to do when getting a power of attorney is to have it reviewed by an estate planning attorney. They can explain the details of your POA and can tell you if it is up-to-date and what other documents may be needed to complement your existing estate plan. Recommended this site near me truck accident lawyer .
If you d not have a power of attorney and are unsure how to go about establishing one, it is important to contact a qualified legal services agency such as the Elder Law Resource Center. They can refer you to an experienced New York power of attorney lawyer and provide you with free legal assistance in the process.
Do I need a lawyer to get a power of attorney?
Yes, you do. A lawyer who specializes in drafting documents like power of attorney will be familiar with the specific requirements and restrictions that apply to your stateâ€™s laws. This can include the mental capacity requirement that you or your loved one must have to sign a power of attorney and the language that must be included in the document.
The requirements and restrictions vary by state, but typically you need to be of sound mind and at least 18 years old. You should also be able to sign the document by yourself. In most states, it is recommended that you have the document notarized as well.