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What is a Power of Attorney? And when should you use one?

A power of attorney (POA) is just a legal document that gives a person the power to act your behalf. They can sign documents for you, pay bills, sell your assets or buy assets. Many times we cannot be physically present because we live abroad and the power of attorney allows your agent to act on your behalf. However, the POA has to be carefully written because if you give too many broad powers to your agent while you are not incapacitated they can pretty much take everything from you. Therefore, it is better to draft a power of attorney when you are sure that you can no longer take care of your affairs (you truly need the help of someone else) and you completely trust the person you are assigning as your agent. Although nothing is set in stone, generally it is safer to assign an immediate family member, like a spouse or a son or daughter to act as your agent because they are more likely to act in your best interest.

The POA usually ends when you die or you revoke it.

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