What Is a Power of Attorney

A power of attorney is a legal document where one person, the principal, gives authority to another person, the agent/attorney-in-fact to conduct certain activities on the behalf of the principal during the principal’s lifetime. The powers conferred on the agent/attorney-in-fact may be limited or broad. The power attorney is effective on signing provided it complies with the legal requirements of the applicable state.

Revocation of a Power of Attorney

The principal can revoke the power of attorney at any time as long as the principal is legally competent. The revocation should be in writing and executed in the same manner as the power of attorney and delivered to the agent.

If the power of attorney was delivered to banks, they should be notified in writing of the revocation. If the power of attorney was recorded on the land records, the revocation should be recorded as well.

Automatic Termination of Power of Attorney and Durable Power of Attorney

A power of attorney terminates automatically upon the death of the principal.

A durable power of attorney allows the principal to create an agency in someone that continues during the incapacity of the principal.

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