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Power of Attorney
Appointing a Power of Attorney is of vital importance, therefore, appointing an Attorney is an extremely important decision. We can assist you to appoint one under a general power of attorney or an enduring power of attorney.
A Power of Attorney is a legal document appointing a person to manage your financial and legal affairs during your lifetime. The person you appoint is then known as the “Attorney”.
In order to make a valid Power of Attorney you must be over 18 years and have legal capacity to understand the nature and effect of the appointment.
Are there different types of Power of Attorneys?
Yes, there are two types of Power of Attorneys:
- General Power of Attorney
- Enduring Power of Attorney
Each of these legal documents play separate and distinct roles in the estate planning process. It is possible to have both a general and enduring Power of Attorney at the same time.
The type of Power of Attorney depends on your circumstances. Below are general explanations of each of the different types of Power of Attorneys.
General Power of Attorney
A General Power of Attorney is a legal document which you can use to appoint a person to make decisions about your property or financial affairs prior to loss of mental capacity for specified periods or functions. Because of this, many people will appoint a General Attorney if they are travelling overseas or if they would like to appoint someone for specific role (e.g. executing a contract on their behalf during a specified period).
Enduring Power of Attorney
An Enduring Power of Attorney is a legal document which you can use to appoint a person to make decisions about your property or financial affairs if you lose mental capacity. This is the most essential document of the two forms of Attorneys. This is your “fail safe” and ensures that if you loose capacity your finances will be taken care of by your Attorney until you either regain capacity or your passing.
The first step in this process is to make an appointment with us to discuss your needs. We will prior to your appointment send you information to complete to assist you to consider relevant issues prior to your meeting.
Questions we may ask you include:
- Who would you like to appoint as your Attorney?
- Do you want to appoint more than one Attorney? and if so, do you want them to be appointed jointly or solely?
- What are their full names, address and occupation? In the circumstances where they cannot be your Attorney who do you want to be your alternate Attorney?
- When do you want the Attorney to be effective?
- A specified timeframe;
- For a specific event;
- Once you lose capacity.
- Do you have a spouse or minor children? If so, do you want provision for them made in your Power of Attorney.
- Do you want to limit your Power of Attorney?
This depends on the type of Power of Attorney and the provisions within the Power of Attorney.
With a General Power of Attorney this is usually limited to a specified period of time (e.g. while you are away).
With an Enduring Power of Attorney, this usually comes into effect once you have lost capacity and ends either upon regaining capacity (if you do) or on your death.
This is specified in the drafting of your document and we can discuss this with you further in your appointment