Power of Attorney Disputes
Granting a Power of Attorney confers the right to make decisions on behalf of the person giving that right, to the person named in the Power of Attorney. A person who receives a Power of Attorney is known as a substitute decision-maker. There are two types of Power of Attorney, a Power of Attorney for Property, and a Power of Attorney for Personal Care.
The person named in a continuing Power of Attorney for Property acquires the ability to manage the complete financial affairs of the person giving the Power of Attorney when they are no longer capable of doing that on their own, however it takes effect immediately unless otherwise stated in the Power of Attorney. The Grantor must appoint the attorney before they lose their decision- making capacity, after they lose capacity this authority can only be granted by Court Order.
People create power of attorneys for property to ensure that someone is available to safeguard their financial interests if they become incapable of making decisions in the future. As per the Substitute Decisions Act, the level of mental capacity needed for a person to bestow power of attorney is a clear understanding of the effect of the power of attorney.
As per the Substitute Decisions Act, a person holding the power of attorney can make decisions for the grantor including but not limited to:
- Making all financial decisions for the grantor including managing their financial investments;
- Manage the grantor’s budget including their household budget and expenses;
Though a Power of Attorney is a useful tool to reduce potential family conflict, it can also give rise to disputes over the manner in which it has been or is being used.
How Does Power of Attorney Disputes Arise?
At the time of drafting the Power of Attorney, the grantee is given the authority to take care of the financial and health needs of their loved one. Sometimes, the attorney may not perform their duties and obligations in a proper manner causing harm to the grantor’s property and assets. It may happen that the attorney may act in their own interests and ignore the best interests of the grantor while making all decisions.
Other reasons may also exist for Power of Attorney disputes. In a circumstance where the grantor has named multiple persons as the attorney, if there is a dispute among the grantees regarding how the grantor’s affairs are to be conducted.
The mental capacity of the grantor to grant the attorney may be another reason for the dispute. If the grantor does not agree with the decisions made by the attorney, they may choose to revoke the Power of Attorney.
How We Can Help
At Nanda & Associate Lawyers, our experienced Estate Lawyers understand your specific circumstances and provide you with cost-effective and customized estate planning solutions for each of them. We can support you to resolve any power of attorney disputes to safeguard yours and your loved one’s interests.
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