How Granting Power of Attorney Can Protect Your Real Estate

Adam Hecht, Northbrook Attorney, Real Estate

Life is quite unpredictable, and it is essential to factor in this when planning for the future. As much as it is not desired, what happens when you cannot make a crucial decision about your real estate investment due to ill health? You are better off knowing there is an agreed framework for protecting your interests in your absence.

This is why you should consider granting power of attorney. The power of attorney is a crucial legal document that enables someone to act on your behalf. It grants another individual the authority to make decisions on your property and other things like finance and medical care. This blog post explains what a power of attorney is and how it can help protect your real estate investment.

The Benefits of Granting Power of Attorney

Power of attorney is most frequently applied when a person loses their capacity for decision-making and becomes incapacitated. The person who is granted power of attorney is called an agent.

By granting power of attorney over your real estate, you prevent unforeseen circumstances from getting in the way of your interests. In this case, your agent can stop your property from being sold or transferred against your wishes. For core issues related to your real estate investment and management, your agent can also ensure that your wishes and desires are enforced. The person you grant power of attorney over your estate can also perform routine maintenance, renovation, and legal tasks on your behalf.

By allowing power of attorney, you can avoid needing guardianship or conservatorship over your estate in your absence, as both options can be costly and time-consuming.

Limitations that May Exist To Power of Attorney

It is possible to define the scope of power that your agent has over your interests. First, different variations exist to power of attorney, and this allows varying levels of control.

A general power of attorney allows the agent to have as much decision-making power as the principal. Durable power of attorney only goes into effect in the event of your incapacitation such that your agent only makes decisions in your absence. Springing power of attorney is activated only in the event that you are mentally incompetent and requires the approval of a physician. You should carefully consider and speak to your attorney about which suits your needs.

If you have doubts about granting power of attorney, you should know that power of attorney can be revoked for different reasons. You have the power to end it, and the court can invalidate it. Also, in the event of your passing or the agent losing the ability to execute this responsibility, a power of attorney stops being valid. If you assign power of attorney to your spouse, a divorce revokes its validity. Essentially, you do not have to worry about the permanence of your choice coming in the way of your interests. Having a trusted attorney in charge of your affairs will protect you.

Deciding on who to grant power of attorney over your estate is never easy, but it is a vital action to protect yourself. State law requires that the person you give power of attorney must be older than 18 years and mentally competent. For Power of Attorney to be legally binding, it cannot be informal; there must be a written and signed agreement drafted according to state law that grants this power to the individual of your choice.

At Hecht-Schondorf, we are committed to protecting the interests of our clients. If you need to speak to an experienced estate attorney about protecting your assets and future, contact us here today.