Winston Law PA

Power of Attorney

A power of attorney is an estate planning tool that allows for a designated person to manage your financial affairs such as buying and selling real estate, signing contracts, buying and selling a car, or signing tax and bank account documents. The powers of the designated agent (the party given the power) can be narrow or broad depending on the language of the document.  Because a power of attorney document allows one person to act in the legal capacity of another, it is an extremely powerful document and should be written by a knowledgeable and skilled estate planning attorney.

Limited Power of Attorney.  A limited power of attorney gives the agent limited power to do a specific act.  A limited power of attorney terminates if the principal (maker of the power of attorney) becomes incapacitated.

General Power of Attorney.  A general power of attorney give the agent broad powers to act on behalf of the principal. A specific list of the types of acts the agent may perform must be within the document. A general power of attorney terminates if the principal becomes incapacitated.

Durable Power of Attorney.  A durable power of attorney can remain in effect even if the maker becomes incapacitated.  There must be certain language within the document providing for the power of attorney to remain in effect after incapacity.  Durable power of attorney documents are most common.

A properly executed power of attorney document must be signed by the principal in the presence of witnesses.  It must be notarized and the principal must be of sound mind.

If you or a loved one are considering drafting estate planning tools such as a power of attorney, or you would like more information, please contact Winston Law, P.A. at (561) 670-9375 or [email protected] for your initial consultation.


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