One of the services that we offer here at the Law Office of Melissa Stewart, formerly Groff Law Firm, is the preparation of legal documents such as powers of attorney. In our experience, people tend to have some misconceptions about powers of attorney and what they do, so we have put together this article to clear up some of the most common pieces of misinformation that we have encountered.
First, let’s establish what a power of attorney is. This term refers to a legal document in which one person (the principal) grants another person (the agent) the right to make legal decisions on their behalf. These decisions typically include managing the principal’s financial affairs and making medical decisions for them when they are unable to do so themselves.
- Misconception #1: Agents Can Do Whatever They Want. One worry that a lot of people have about powers of attorney is that they will give their agent the ability to do whatever they want with their estate and assets. In reality this is not true, as there are safeguards in place to make sure your agent acts in your best interest, and it is also possible to place limitations on what they can and can’t do in the power of attorney document.
- Misconception #2: All Power of Attorney Documents are the Same. Another idea that people have about powers of attorney is that they are one-size-fits-all, and that thought is enough to make anyone wary. The truth, however, is that there are many types of powers of attorney, all of which give different types of powers to the agent, and they are designed to deal with different situations. Our team will help you select the ideal power of attorney documents for your needs.
- Misconception #3: You Don’t Need a Lawyer for Powers of Attorney. A third mistake that people make when it comes to powers of attorney is thinking that a generic document they find online is good enough. Our team assures you that this is not the case, and we strongly recommend that you consult an attorney in order to draft your power of attorney documents. We’ll make sure that these documents take your unique circumstances into account and serve your specific needs.