A Power of Attorney is a legal document that you can use to appoint someone (your attorney) to act on your behalf – that is, to be your decision maker – in property and financial matters. You can put conditions and limitations on how the Power of Attorney can be used, but generally they are used for such things as:
- signing contracts to buy or selling real estate, shares and other assets for you;
- operating your bank accounts; and
- spending your money on your behalf;
A Power of Attorney might be useful if you are travelling overseas, hospitalised or want some assistance from a trusted person in looking after your affairs. You can also appoint an attorney to make financial decisions for you should the time come when you are no longer able to manage your own affairs.
The main difference between a Power of Attorney and an Enduring Power of Attorney is that an enduring power still has effect even after you lose mental capacity.
We can advise you about whether a Power of Attorney is right for you and what terms or conditions might be needed. We can assist you in preparing and signing an effective Power of Attorney.
NB A Power of Attorney only relates to ‘money’ issues, not issues about your ‘person’. If you want to appoint someone to make decisions for you, if you are unable to do so, about such things as where you live and what sort of medical treatment you receive, you need to appoint an Enduring Guardian (see Enduring Guardianship for more info)
For legal advice and guidance about Powers of Attorney: