“Thought for the Day” #913 – by Stephen R. Elville, J.D., LL.M.

February 24, 2017

In this week’s blog, we have discussed the use of financial powers of attorney in will and revocable trust plans, the difficulty agents sometimes have in determining when to use their power, and how the death of the principal terminates the authority of his or her agent. In this week’s final thought, let’s address a fundamental concept considered obvious and taken for granted by many but actually misunderstood by a surprising number of persons: when should a financial power of attorney be implemented, and can a power of attorney be implemented after one’s incapacity? Answer(s) – financial powers of attorney should be implemented as soon as possible by persons having the mental capacity to do so – a financial power of attorney cannot be legally executed by a person who lacks the minimum mental capacity to do so – and a financial power of attorney cannot be executed by another on behalf of a principal.