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Power of Attorney

A power of attorney (POA) is a written authorization to represent or act on another's behalf in private affairs, business, or some other legal matter. The person authorizing the other to act is the principal, and the one authorized to act is the agent or, in some common law jurisdictions, the attorney-in-fact. The most common uses for a POA are financial transactions and health care decisions.
In 2006 the Uniform Law Commission set forth to promote the passage of the Uniform Power of Attorney Act. This act provides a simple way for people to deal with their property by providing a power of attorney in case of future incapacity. While chiefly a set of default rules, the act also contains safeguards for the protection of an incapacitated principal. The concept of a power of attorney was first incorporated into the Uniform Probate Code in 1969 to offer an inexpensive method of surrogate decision making to those whose modest assets did not justify pre-incapacity planning with a trust or post-incapacity property management with a guardianship. After more than three decades, the durable power of attorney is now used by both the wealthy and the non-wealthy for incapacity planning as well as convenience.

General Power of Attorney

The General POA is established on a specific date. The authorization to act terminates if the principle becomes incapacitated and is unable to act on their own behalf.

Durable Power of Attorney

The Durable POA is established on a specific date and continues until it is revoked even if the principle becomes incapacitated and is unable to act on their own behalf.

Advanced Health Care Directive

This type of Power of Attorney, sometimes called a Living Will, combines a set of instructions with the authorization to act to carry out the instructions. This POA goes into effect if and when the principle becomes incapacitated and unable to act on their own behalf.
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