Virginia Beach Lawyers for Power of Attorney
If you are preparing your estate plan in Virginia Beach, you may choose to include one or more powers of attorney. A power of attorney is a legally-binding document you can use to designate a trusted agent to manage your financial or other affairs if needed.
Creating a POA and leaving medical directives for your agent and your loved ones will clarify your wishes and lower the risk of disputes between family members. Contact the Virginia Beach estate planning attorneys at Pincus Goodman, P.C., today for a consultation to discuss your needs and goals. You can reach us by phone at (757) 301-9634.
Common Types of Powers of Attorney
Some of the main types of POAs include a general POA, a durable power of attorney (DPOA), and a medical POA.
While a general POA can be used to appoint a person to make financial decisions on your behalf during an absence, a general POA will not work if you suddenly become incapacitated. A DPOA, on the other hand, will become effective if you become incapacitated or disabled, giving your agent decision-making authority over your legal, financial, and business affairs.
A medical POA is a type of durable POA. The person you appoint as your medical POA has the authority to make medical decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated or disabled. For example, if you fall into a coma after an accident, your agent will have the legal authority to determine whether you should remain on life support. Through a medical POA, you can leave healthcare directives for your agent to follow in the event of your incapacitation. You can reduce the potential for conflict amongst your loved ones and ensure that your affairs are managed according to your wishes by establishing a medical POA.
Requirements for Establishing a Power of Attorney
To have a valid and enforceable POA, you must meet certain requirements. First, you must be at least 18 years old. You must also have the mental capacity to create a POA. While mental capacity is open to interpretation, you must generally understand the nature of what you are doing and the effect it will have.
In Virginia, you aren’t legally required to have your POA notarized, but it is recommended. Having your POA notarized further legitimizes and strengthens the terms of your POA. Some financial entities will also refuse to accept a POA unless it is notarized, so taking this step can be crucial.
Can a Power of Attorney Be Terminated in Virginia?
If you so choose, you can revoke a POA at any time, as long as you are mentally competent to do so. Your POA may also end if the agent you designated to make decisions on your behalf is no longer available (for instance, if they pass away). By assigning a successor agent, you can plan for someone to take the original agent’s place if required.
Furthermore, any existing POA automatically terminates if you pass away.
Contact a Virginia Beach Estate Planning Attorney Today
Many people assume that only elderly individuals need to worry about creating an estate plan, but the truth is that it is never too early to begin preparing for unexpected events. For help establishing your POA and for all of your other estate planning needs, contact the Virginia Beach estate planning lawyers at Pincus Goodman, P.C., by calling (757) 301-9634.
Our estate planning lawyers will ensure that all of the required documents are in place, that your power of attorney document is legally enforceable, and that your wishes can be properly carried out in the event of your absence or incapacitation. Call us for assistance today.