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Why you should not skip naming your power of attorney agent

On Behalf of | Jul 3, 2023 | Estate Planning

A power of attorney (POA) is an effective estate planning tool that allows individuals to continue having control, albeit indirectly, of their finances, business and legal affairs, even if they become incapable of handling them on their own. One of its important components is the appointment of an agent. While it is not exactly a dead end, failure to name an agent has some drawbacks.

Appointing a conservator: a costly and lengthy process

If your POA does not name a specific agent, your family and other interested individuals will have to request the court to appoint a financial agent, called a conservator under Georgia laws. While this seems like a simple process, it can be lengthy and expensive. To save yourself and your family extra costs and resources, it is crucial for you to specifically name your agent during the document creation.

The court can appoint someone you don’t trust

While courts use their best discretion when choosing your financial guardian, they would not know whom you trust to handle your affairs for certain. It is common for individuals to appoint their family members, so the courts may consider this when appointing your conservator. However, being family does not automatically mean you trust them to make decisions for you. If you were able to name your agent during the POA drafting, you would not need to worry about whether your agent will handle your affairs properly.

With estate planning, even the smallest things hold great value. Naming a POA agent may seem like a simple task, but this action greatly impacts the management of an individual’s finances and affairs. It is always a good idea to carefully check your document to ensure you did not miss anything. If you want to take an extra step, you can have an estate planning expert review your POA.