Arlington Power of Attorney Lawyer

Do you know who will make financial and medical decisions on your behalf if you are severely injured or disabled? A power of attorney can name an individual to act on your behalf if you are unable to make financial or medical decisions on your own.

Creating a power of attorney can help your family avoid conflict and unnecessary delays in the event that you are incapacitated. Speak with an Arlington power of attorney lawyer today and protect yourself in case of an accident, injury, or illness. A conversation with a skilled trusts and estates lawyer can help you determine what is right for you.

Power of Attorney Basics

A power of attorney (POA) is a legal document that gives one person the ability to make decisions for the other. The person who creates the POA, known as the principal, delegates their authority to an agent who is authorized to act on the principal’s behalf.

Virginia follows the Uniform Power of Attorney Act, codified at Va. Code Ann. §64.2-1600 et seq. Under this statute, a principal can give as much power (or as little power) to their agent as they want. The agent could be an individual or could be an entity like a corporation or a trust.

Signing a power of attorney allows the agent to make decisions on the principal’s behalf. An agent with an active POA can act on the principal’s behalf at any time unless their authority is limited to certain circumstances or situations.

The principal can continue to manage their own affairs even though they have signed a power of attorney. The principal retains the right to revoke or modify their POA until they are no longer competent to do so. If the POA is not revoked, it will terminate upon the principal’s death.

Types of Powers of Attorney

The amount of authority an agent has depends on the type of POA the principal gives them. A power of attorney could be general or limited, durable or springing, or financial or medical.

General and Limited Powers of Attorney

A general power of attorney is the broadest type of POA. A person with a general POA can do anything that the principal could do themselves, from opening or closing bank accounts to selling property. In contrast, a limited power of attorney only allows an agent to have as much power as the document specifies.

Durable and Springing Powers of Attorney

A durable power of attorney survives the principal’s incapacity. If the power of attorney is not durable, then it becomes invalid once the principal can no longer make decisions for themselves.

A springing power of attorney gives an agent authority to make decisions on behalf of the principal for a limited period of time following a specific circumstance. For example, if a person knows that they are going to be incapacitated following a major surgery, they may sign a springing POA. The power granted to the agent during the incapacity would revert (or spring) back to the principal once that situation ended.

Get Help from an Arlington Power of Attorney Lawyer Today

Creating a power of attorney can give you and your family peace of during an emergency. Without these documents, family members often have to seek a guardianship and conservatorship to help their incapacitated loved one.

By planning for the worst-case scenario, you can be sure that the people you want to make decisions for you in an emergency have the power to do so. Prepare for the unexpected by scheduling an appointment with an Arlington power of attorney lawyer today.

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