A Power of Attorney (also known as a POA) is one of the most important estate planning documents. It allows you (“Principal”) to appoint someone else (“Agent” or “Attorney in Fact”) to act for you. Therefore, if you are ill, involved in a serious accident or not available to act for yourself then someone else you previously appointed can make financial decisions on your behalf.
Common examples include:
- Real estate transactions
- Stocks and bonds
- Operating a business
- Retirement Plans
A Power of Attorney can be broad or only permit the Agent to make very limited decisions. As the Principal, you choose the authority you wish to delegate.
You must execute your Power of Attorney while of “sound mind.” Any Connecticut Power of Attorney executed after 2016, is presumed to be “Durable.” This means that the Power of Attorney will still be effective if the Principal becomes incapacitated.
As with all other estate planning documents, your Power of Attorney should be kept in a safe and secure place. Let family and other trusted people know where they can find it. In Connecticut. a photocopy or electronic stored POA is as valid as the original.
A few cautionary words. If you do not have a POA, a Conservator will usually need to be appointed through the Probate Court should you become incapacitated. This has significant disadvantages. For example, a delay in decision making, cost and uncertainty as to whom will be appointed for you.
Connecticut Power of Attorney Preparation
I represent clients in estate planning matter though out Fairfield County including those who reside in Easton, Fairfield, Monroe, Trumbull, Stratford, Bridgeport, Westport, Weston, New Canaan, Wilton, Norwalk, Darien, Stamford and Greenwich.