A Durable Power of Attorneys (DPOA) is a crucial estate planning tool that we urge our clients to seriously consider using. Below, we explain what you need to know to successfully use a DPOA.
What Is a Durable Power of Attorney?
It is a written, witnessed, and notarized document in which you designate someone to handle your financial affairs. The document becomes effective upon execution and delivery of either a copy or an original to the person you have designated.
How Does a DPOA Work?
A DPOA allows the person you have designated to handle your financial affairs. This can include accessing your bank accounts, brokerage accounts, safety deposit box, signing tax returns, signing deeds and mortgages, and other such things.
Who Do You Designate as Your Power of Attorney?
Most people name their spouse or another person that they trust, such as a child, family member, or close friend.
Why Would You Need a DPOA?
The term “Durable” means that it survives your incapacity. If you are incapacitated with something like a stroke or dementia and if you have done a DPOA, then you can bypass the Courts and guardianship proceedings. This is a big deal because if you have to go through a guardianship proceeding, the Courts can come in and declare you incompetent, take away your rights to make any decisions, and appoint someone who you may not have ever met to now be in charge of your life. In addition, the cost of a guardianship can be staggering.
Speak to a Talented & Experienced Estate Planning Lawyer Today
At O'Connor Law Firm, we know that successful estate planning is all about choices and setting up the right documentation while you are still able-bodied and mentally competent. Any person over 18 should have a DPOA. For example, if your child is going off to college, then you will find it difficult to access anything from the university without a DPOA. We hope this short summary helps you understand the importance of a DPOA and why you should have one. If you have any more questions please reach out to our legal team to discuss your situation.
To request a complimentary consultation with a lawyer at our firm, please give us a call at (800) 655-0175 today.