Powers Of Attorney

How A Power Of Attorney Can Make A Difference In Your Estate Plan

A power of attorney is a document that allows you to appoint a trusted person, known as an agent, to handle your legal and financial affairs on your behalf while you are alive. A power of attorney does not take away your right to handle your own affairs. Rather, it gives authority to others to handle your affairs in addition to you. When you reach a point where you need the help of others to manage your affairs, the law firm of J. Kevin Tharpe, P.C. in Gainesville can help.

A power of attorney is typically needed in the event you become mentally or physically unable to make informed, responsible decisions on your own behalf. The arrangement can last as long as a particular ailment continues or until the end of life. You can revoke (cancel) a power of attorney at any time, regardless of your physical or mental state.

Types Of Powers Of Attorney

A power of attorney can be limited or unlimited, and can take effect immediately or upon the occurrence of an event in the future:

  • General power of attorney vs. special power of attorney. A general power of attorney gives your agent a wide range of legal authority over your affairs, whereas a special power of attorney limits the agent to specific acts or transactions. For example, a special power of attorney might authorize your agent to sell your home or withdraw money from certain bank accounts but not others.
  • Durable power of attorney. A durable power of attorney takes effect as soon as the document is signed and notarized and remains in effect until it is revoked or until your death.
  • Conditional (or springing) power of attorney. A conditional power of attorney becomes effective at a specified future time or upon the occurrence of a specified event, such as your incapacity. They are not ideal for every situation because it can be difficult to prove that the qualifying event has taken place. Also, banks and other financial institutions are sometimes reluctant to accept a conditional power of attorney.

A power of attorney is an important tool to ensure that people you trust are looking out for your best interests if you are unable to manage your own affairs. Gainesville attorney J. Kevin Tharpe will be happy to explain to you how a power of attorney could be helpful in your estate planning, along with a Gainesville advance directive for health care.

Have Your Estate Planning Questions Answered By An Experienced Gainesville and Young Harris Attorney

We have nearly 25 years of experience advising Northeast Georgians. Call the law firm of J. Kevin Tharpe, P.C. at 866-253-6994 or contact us online for an initial consultation. We have offices in Gainesville and Young Harris for your convenience.