How to Make an Alabama Financial Power of Attorney

No one is immune from the possible loss of their mental acuity that may result from growing old or from a health emergency. Making an Alabama financial power of attorney is an important part of a complete Alabama estate plan package. Appointing a trusted individual as your Alabama financial power of attorney allows that individual otherwise known as your “agent” or “attorney in fact” to make financial decisions on your behalf during the pendency of your incapacity. For most people, they will appoint their spouse, a family member of a close friend as their financial power of attorney or Financial POA.

This is an important responsibility as it can ensure that your financial affairs are maintained while you are otherwise incapacitated. It is a good idea to speak to whomever you select as your financial power of attorney in advance to make sure they are comfortable and agree to accept this important responsibility.

Alabama Financial POA Powers

As your Alabama financial POA, your agent is authorized under Alabama law to manage your financial affairs, including power to buy and sell and lease real property, tangible personal property, stocks and bonds, to trade commodities, operation of a business or other entity and governance over your bank accounts and other financial products you may own. In addition, your agent is authorized to enter into contracts on your behalf and to sign your name to legal documents.

Finally, your agent is typically authorized to innate or maintain litigation on your behalf, seek and receive benefits from government programs or civil or military service, and control beneficial interest in an estate, trust or other beneficial interest you may have. In addition, an Alabama financial POA document typically contains a section for grants of specific authority for your agent.

Alabama Financial POA Fiduciary Duty

As your Alabama financial power of attorney your agent is a fiduciary of your estate, which means that they owe you a duty of loyalty and of care and must act in your best financial interest at all times and in accordance with your wishes. If you have any concerns about an individuals trustworthiness or their ability to manage finances they may not be a good candidate for your financial power of attorney. If you have concerns about who to appoint you should consult with an Alabama estate planning lawyer in your area.

Types of Alabama Financial Powers of Attorney

There are several different types of Alabama financial powers of attorney. In Alabama, a durable financial power of attorney goes into effect immediately when the document is signed. In contrast, in Alabama, a springing financial power of attorney only becomes effective if you become incapacitated and is the most typical kind used by people when they are preparing their estate plan.  It is important to pay close attention when executing a financial power of attorney document to make sure you whether you are signing a durable power of attorney or a spring power of attorney. The difference could be very costly in the event of your incapacity. If you are not sure it is a good idea to consult with an Alabama estate planning attorney.

How To Properly Execute Your Alabama Financial POA

In Alabama, a financial power of attorney must be signed before a notary public. In addition, Alabama requires that in the even of the sale or purchase of real estate is involved, it may also need to be signed before witnesses and must specifically spell out what real estate the principal has authorized the agent to buy or sell. Finally, a couple states require the agent to acknowledge receipt of the power from the principle so there is no confusion over whether or not they had been appointed as an agent.

How To Revoke Your Alabama Financial POA

You can revoke your Alabama power of attorney at any time you wish as long as you have the request mental competence. In order to revoke your Alabama financial power of attorney, the revocation needs to be in writing making clear that you are revoking the Alabama POA and it should be signed in front of an Alabama notary public. The signed and notarized revocation of the financial power of attorney should then be delivered to your attorney-in-fact and any third party with whom your financial power of attorney has been in contact so they can be placed on notice that the Financial POA has been revoked. If you have any questions about how to revoke your Alabama financial power of attorney please consult an Alabama wills and trusts attorney for legal assistance.

How To Store Your Alabama Financial POA

Finally, once you have made your Alabama financial power of attorney it is a good idea to make a photocopy of the document for your records before you deliver it to your financial agent. Keeping a copy of your Alabama financial power of attorney document ensures that you have a record of exactly what powers you gave to your financial agent. You should keep your copy of the financial power of attorney document where you keep your other important documents so that in the event that you need to reference it in the future you know where it is. For some people who may be traveling, it is also a good idea to store a digital copy of the document on your computer for easy reference while traveling abroad.

 

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