The power of attorney or more accurately the asset power of attorney is something that can only be used while you are living. This document gives the named person to act on your behalf for financial matters. A power of attorney can specific, meaning a specific period of time or a specific type of matter such as signing to sell real estate. The power of attorney can be springing, meaning it doesn’t spring into effect until a doctor or two declare you incompetent or it can be general, for everything at any time.
When choosing a power of attorney be very careful to ensure the person is trust worthy. If it is a general power of attorney, they can sign any document for you at any time whether you approve or not. For example, they could go to the bank and empty your account or sell you home without your knowledge. The worst part is, your only recourse is against them. If the bank relies on a valid power of attorney, they can’t be held liable because you gave that individual the power. This is why we like the springing or specific power of attorney because it either places limits or doesn’t take affect until a professional gets involved.
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