A Florida Power of Attorney is a legal document where one party (the Principal) authorizes another party (the Agent or the Attorney-in-fact) to act on his or her behalf during an absence.
This authority can specifically include or exclude several areas of interest, including matters of physical property, real estate, banking, insurance, tax matters, etc.
Traditionally, this authority ends when you become medically incapacitated. However, you have the option to make the Power of Attorney “Durable” which means it will remain effective from the time of signing the document and if you become medically incapacitated (recommended).
A typical use of a Power of Attorney is to handle your affairs while you are out of the country, or to designate someone to manage your affairs if you get sick.
New Florida Power of Attorney Requirements Under the 2011 revision:
1. If you executed power of attorney prior to October 1, 2011 it is still valid.
2. If you entered into a new Florida Power of Attorney, please not the following:
- It must be specific in terms of the powers you are granting;
- You must initial each grant of power;
- It must be signed by two witnesses and notarized;
- The new law requires that for the POA to be durable, it must have language in the document to that effect;
- The power of attorney is suspended upon the initiation of a judicial proceeding to determine capacity of the principal or for a guardianship proceeding.
- A power of attorney terminates upon the death of either the principal or the attorney-in-fact.
- Compensation: Under the new Act, an agent is entitled to reimbursement for expenses reasonably incurred while acting in the capacity as the attorney-in-fact; however, a big departure from the prior law is that only a “qualified agent” may receive compensation for services rendered. A qualified agent is defined as a spouse or an heir of the principal, a financial institution with trust powers and a place of business in Florida, an attorney or accountant licensed in Florida, or a natural person who is a resident of Florida and who has never been an agent for more than three principals at a time.
Filling out the Questionnaire is free. There is no time limit. You can save your answers and return at a later time. When you are ready, you may decide whether or not to purchase this legal document.
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