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Each of these documents is suitable to use where you grant powers for a short and specified period of time.The document records the terms of delegation - legal authority for someone else to act on your behalf.

As the giver you become the "donor" of the power and the receiver becomes your "attorney". The actions that your attorney may take on your behalf can be as general or specific as you like and may relate to one part or all of your affairs.

With these templates, you have complete flexibility as to who to nominate as your attorney, the powers that you delegate and how they should be used, and the time period during which the powers last. You can also specify the matters you don’t want the attorney to have power over.

Using a PoA document

It is a good idea to discuss the extent of the power with your attorney in advance. Doing so will give him or her the opportunity to ask questions about your instructions and let you make clear exactly what you would like him or her to do. If you do, make sure what you have agreed is included in the document.

In order for your PoA document to be valid, you must meet these conditions:

  • if you are over 18 years of age and have mental capacity.
  • the person to be appointed must also be over 18 years old and not be an undischarged or interim bankrupt.
  • you can only grant the power of attorney to do things that you already have the right and capacity to do yourself.
  • You do not have to register this general power of attorney with anyone or any organisation.This document has binding effect once signed (or otherwise, if you say so in the document).It relies on law contained in the Powers of Attorney Act 1971.

Examples of use might be

  • you are abroad but need someone to manage your financial and legal affairs at home (such as buying or selling property).
  • you want to allow someone to perform a specific task on your behalf on a regular basis (such paying your bills in your name from your bank account each month or collecting a pension).
  • you want to allow someone with greater knowledge of a subject to act on your behalf.

Do not confuse this with a Lasting Power of Attorney which is used in anticipation of a person becoming permanently unable to handle their own affairs.

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