A Power of Attorney refers to a legal instrument that is used to delegate legal authority from a Principal to an Agent or Attorney-in-Fact in order to make property, financial and other legal decisions on behalf of the Principal. The Principal refers to the person who executes (or signs) the Power of Attorney while the Agent or Attorney-in-Fact is the person to whom the legal authority to act on behalf of the Principal is transferred to.
The legal authority transferred by means of a Power of Attorney instrument ranges from limited to broad legal authority depending on the needs of the Principal. It is usually employed for situations wherein the Principal suffers from certain form of disability or illness, or in legal transactions, where the Principal cannot be present to sign the necessary legal documents.
At Steffy Law P.C., our expertise with Power of Attorney covers all three categories of Power of Attorney – Durable, Non-Durable and Springing Power of Attorney.
A Durable Power of Attorney enables the Agent to act on behalf of the Principal even after he or she is not physically or mentally fit to make decisions. It comes into effect immediately and can only be revoked by the Principal or until the Principal’s demise.
A Non-Durable Power of Attorney enables the Agent to act on behalf of the Principal in specific transactions probably due to a temporary absence of the Principal. It also remains in effect until it is revoked by the Principal or the Principal becomes mentally incompetent or dies.
In the case of Springing Power of Attorney, it becomes effective at a future time stipulated by Principal usually upon the occurrence of physical/mental disability. It usually involves the presence of a qualified physician to determine if the Principal is indeed incompetent to handle his or her own affairs. It remains in effect until the Principal’s death or until it is revoked by a competent court of law.
In New York State, there have been recent changes to the laws governing Power of Attorney. These changes cover both the language used in drafting the documents and the ways in which the document is executed. As a result, you require a law firm that stays up to date with all the amendments to the provisions concerning Power of Attorney as set forth in the State’s General Obligations Law. At Steffy Law P.C., we always remain current with the latest changes in the laws.
Powers of Attorney are important documents that can grant another individual a considerable amount of power over your affairs. As such, it is important that you get adequate legal counsel and representation when drafting such a document. At Steffy Law P.C., we introduce a personal touch with the highest level of professionalism in all our dealings with clients. We provide you with all the legal guidance for your Power of Attorney needs. Get in touch with us today by phone or email.