Are Your Personal Affairs in Order? A Power of Attorney Form Can Help.
As a notary public, I receive many calls requesting notarization of the Power of Attorney form. This document grants power to an attorney-in-fact or agent to make financial, legal and/or medical decisions on behalf of the principal. Many people sign the Power of Attorney form at their home, business or lawyer’s office as part of their estate planning package. Often times, the signing of this form may also take place at a hospital, skilled nursing facility or convalescent home.
A recent call came from a daughter who lived in another state, and needed me to meet her at the hospital the next morning after her flight landed. Her father had been taking his daily walk and suffered a heart attack. Luckily he was fine. Everyone was relieved that he was also mentally and physically capable of signing the document. Unfortunately, there have been times that I cannot notarize the Power of Attorney because the principal is not aware of what they are signing, or does not want to sign.
Types of Power of Attorney Documents
There are a variety of Power of Attorney documents and a lawyer should be consulted to answer any questions prior to having the forms notarized. A few of the most common are shown here:
General - remains in effect until the principal becomes incapacitated or dies
Durable - remains in effect even if the principal becomes incapacitated
Medical - (also known as Advance HealthCare Directive) allows the agent to make medical decisions for the principal
Financial - some banks require their own Power of Attorney form specific to finances
California notary laws require that all document signers must personally appear before the notary and have valid, government issued identification. In addition, all persons signing the form must be lucid and understand what they are signing. Last-minute emergencies are not easy for you or for your family, Notary Long Beach is here to help you with your Power of Attorney paperwork as well as other types of Estate Planning documents.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kimberly McKendell, the owner of Notary Long Beach, is a mobile notary public based in Long Beach who has completed thousands of notarizations since 2001. Call her for all of your notary needs. She specializes in apostilles and certifications, real estate documents, living trusts, medical records, estate planning documents, title transfers, patent forms, international adoptions, pre- and post-nuptial agreements, and power of attorney documents.