3 Things That Are Not Granted By A Power Of Attorney

Posted on: 5 February 2015

If you fear that you may have difficulty in the near future handling your financial affairs due to illness or advanced age, you might wish to think about filling out a financial power of attorney form (POA) and having it notarized. This form - found online or at your local library or at an attorney's office - will grant powers to a person that you trust so that they can handle your financial affairs for you. While you should always trust the person you choose to be your agent, your finances are legally protected by a POA. Following are three things not granted by a power of attorney.

Immediate Access to Financial Accounts

If you want to remain in control of your finances until it is impossible for you to do so, you can. By filing what is called a springing durable financial POA, you remain in control of your finances until you become incapacitated to an extent that makes it impossible for you to see after your own finances. . 

Unlimited Access to Accounts

A POA does not grant your agent unlimited access to all your financial accounts nor does it allow them to make choices that are not in line with your wishes. When you fill out a POA, you will specify which accounts may be accessed and which actions may be taken by your agent. If you become unable to make decisions, your agent must adhere to the guidelines you set forth before you became incapacitated. They cannot start spending your money as they see fit.  

Access to Accounts After Your Death

All POAs become null and void upon your death. So, you don't have to worry that your agent will clean out your accounts after you pass. For someone to be able to access your accounts after your death, you have to designate them as your "payable upon death" agent or beneficiary. Additionally, you can outline how you want your property and money disbursed in your will, and everyone will have to honor your wishes. 

A POA can be invaluable, but many people are afraid to grant such powers out of fear of being ripped off. Fortunately, there are laws that protect you from actions that your agent might try to take without your express permission. And your agent must adhere to these laws or face prosecution. 

For more information, contact a business such as Mills & Mills Law Group.