Florida Powers of Attorney

A Florida Durable Power of Attorney should be considered an essential piece of everyone’s estate plan. In October 2011, the laws governing Florida Powers of Attorney changed and offer greater protection.

What is a Power of Attorney?

A Power of Attorney is a legal document delegating authority from one person to another. In the document, the person who makes of the Power of Attorney is known as the “principal”. The principal grants to an agent the right to act on his or her behalf. The Florida Power of Attorney itself will set out the exact authority granted to the agent. It can be very limited or extremely broad in scope to certain acts.

What are some uses of a Power of Attorney?

A Power of Attorney may be used to give another the right to:

  • Sell a Car
  • Sell or Purchase a Home or Real Estate
  • Access another’s Bank Account
  • Sign a Contract on someone’s behalf
  • Make Healthcare Decisions
  • Handle Financial Transactions
  • Create a Trust

“Limited Power of Attorney” vs. “General Power of Attorney”

As its name implies, A “Limited Power of Attorney” gives the agent authority to conduct a specific act. For example, someone may create a Florida Limited Power of Attorney to sell a home in another state by delegating authority to another person to handle the transaction locally through a “Limited Power of Attorney.” Such a power could be “limited” to selling the home or to other specified acts.

A “General Power of Attorney” typically gives the agent very broad powers to perform any legal act on behalf of the principal. A specific list of the types of activities the agent is authorized to perform must be included in the document.

What is a “Durable Power of Attorney”?

A Power of Attorney terminates if the principal becomes incapacitated, unless it is a special kind of Power of Attorney known as a “Durable Power of Attorney.” A Durable Power of Attorney remains effective even if a person becomes incapacitated. However, there are certain exceptions specified in Florida law when a Durable Power of Attorney may not be used for an incapacitated principal. A Durable Power of Attorney must contain special wording that provides the power survives the incapacity of the principal. Most Powers of Attorney granted today are durable.

A Power of Attorney is an important and powerful legal document, as it is authority for someone to act in someone else’s legal capacity. It should be drawn by a lawyer to meet the person’s specific circumstances and in accordance to statutory requirements to ensure its enforceability. Pre-printed forms may fail to provide the protection desired.

Contact Tilden Law today to discuss your specific Florida Power of Attorney needs, 407-599-1234.