Whether or not you are facing an incapacitating health issue, you may consider obtaining a power of attorney for your property and assets. A power of attorney for property is a document that grants people the legal ability to make decisions regarding your assets and properties. If you are seeking to file this type of power of attorney, there are several important factors you must consider in order to ensure that your documents are valid for when they need to be. This article will discuss essential elements to understand when filing for a power of attorney for your property.
The Importance of a Power of Attorney for Your Property
When you file a power of attorney for your property, you are essentially giving another person or party the legal right to make decisions in regard to your economic finances as well as making other financial decisions for you.
With the help of a power of attorney, you are making sure that your finances are handled properly should you be unable to do so on your own. For example, if you become sick or injured and are then unable to make these sorts of decisions, a power of attorney will grant a person of your choice the legal right to make these decisions for you.
Selecting Your Agent
The individual who you choose to grant the power of attorney to is commonly referred to as an agent. It is important to note that it is recommended that you choose more than one agent, in case one is unable to complete the task. One of these agents, however, will hold primary status.
An agent can be someone you are related to, your spouse, or just about anyone you trust. This person, and the document entirely, should be completed before any deliberating matter occurs to you. A power of attorney will not be held valid if you failed to complete the process and you become medically impaired in a way that you cannot make your own decisions.
Power Granted to An Agent
Once you have selected your agent, you should also know that this person can be given access to your assets entirely or you can also choose to be selective in what responsibilities you would like to grant him or her. The following are some of the most common responsibilities that can be granted to an agent with a power of attorney for property and asset reasons:
- Buy property on your behalf,
- Sell property on your behalf,
- Control your bank account(s),
- Pay your bills,
- Contribute or otherwise withdraw money from your retirement plan,
- Handle your insurance or annuity policies,
- Be responsible for any tax issues you may have had,
- Buy stocks on your behalf,
- Sell stocks on your behalf,
- Control your safe deposit boxes,
- Obtain the legal support of an attorney to either file or defend against lawsuits on your behalf,
- Take over your business,
- Handle your estate, and/or
- Manage any benefits you may be receiving.
You should know that the powers you grant your agent are up to you. These terms can also be modified so as long as you’re able to say so.
The Bottom Line
A power of attorney is one of the most important documents to consider whether or not you are facing a debilitating situation. It can help to provide peace of mind, if filed correctly. In order to ensure that your power of attorney is valid, consult with a legal professional to guide you through the process. Seek the assistance and support of an estate lawyer that is right for you; the Chicago Estate Lawyer can be an essential tool to do so.