If you want to grant permission to a trusted family member or friend to act legally on your behalf for financial, medical or personal reasons, you'll need to call on either general or special power of attorney.
What You Should Know:
- In a general power of attorney, your power of attorney agent will have broad legal authority over your affairs. In a special power of attorney, your agent will make decisions limited to only a few situations.
- To create power of attorney, you'll need to compose and sign a document granting this authority and ask two adult witnesses to sign as well. Although it's not required in all cases, it's often a good idea to seek out a notary public as a witness.
- To cancel power of attorney, you can shred the original document, orally revoke the power of attorney and have a witness attest to the revocation, or sign a document that ends your agent's legal authority. Regardless of your physical or mental state, you may end power of attorney at any time.
I'm confused about the rights and limits of a power of attorney document I've been asked to sign. What should I do?
Consult a lawyer. Do not sign a document that you don't understand completely, and don't agree to grant legal authority or accept legal responsibility unless you are comfortable with it.
Source: Official Code of Georgia. This information was prepared as a public service of the State of Georgia to provide general information, not to advise on any specific legal problem. It is not, and cannot be construed to be, legal advice.