What Types of Powers Can I Give to My Agent?
There are a variety of powers you can grant your agent. In many cases, an attorney-in-fact is granted general authority, which allows them to act as you would act if you were not incapacitated, in all financial and legal matters.
However, you can choose which powers you would like your agent to have, as well as name certain restrictions to those powers.
Here is a list of the different powers you can grant to your personal representative, and what those powers allow them to do:
In granting real estate powers, your attorney-in-fact may buy, sell, rent, or trade property in your name. This includes rental properties and land.
An example of a restriction on this type of power would be if you wanted to allow your representative to manage all of your properties except one. You could restrict them from selling a certain piece of land, renting out a home, or buying further property.
If you grant business powers to your agent, you are allowing them to run your business and act for you as a shareholder. They will be able to make investment, employment, and budgetary decisions, as well as others. They would also represent you during any meetings or litigation matters.
A restriction on this type of power would be to limit the amount they are allowed to invest in the business, or whether or not they may hire new employees.
A personal representative with permission to act in financial matters is able to make payments, transfer funds, cash checks, and control your banking interests. This may include savings and checking accounts as well as investments such as mutual funds.
A restriction for an attorney-in-fact who has been granted financial control may be to allow them to only spend a certain amount, or to only have access to certain accounts.
This power allows your representative to control, change, or otherwise alter your insurance policies. This can mean business, home, or life insurance, as well as an annuity.
A restriction could be to allow your attorney-in-fact to cash your annuity check, but not to change your current insurance policies.
Giving your representative the power to act in your stead for legal matters means that they will act on your behalf in any and all legal claims or litigation matters. This could include a lawsuit or a legal dispute.
A restriction may be to only represent you in current cases, but not future ones.
This power includes managing costs for education, maintenance, and medical care for yourself and/or your loved ones.
A restriction could be to limit your representative’s responsibilities to that of your children, but not your spouse.
This allows your attorney-in-fact to manage any assets transferred to any living trust that you have control over.
An example of a restriction on this type of power would be to allow your representative to transfer assets to one trust that you have control over, but not another.
Employ Required Professionals
This power allows someone to hire professionals in order to care for you or your family. This could be a lawyer, a caregiver, an accountant, or any other type of professional that is required to assist you or your family.
You could restrict a representative to only hire professionals for certain matters, such as accounting, but not health care.
Other Powers Include:
- Tax obligations
- Government benefits
- Retirement plans and benefits
- To buy, sell, or exchange items
- To provide gifts to family members or friends
- To donate to charities