What is a springing power of attorney?

The power of attorney is a document that takes effect only when a specific criterion with its conditions is met. The springing power of attorney falls under this, with the condition being that the written content will immediately take effect once the principal becomes mentally impaired and disabled. This document is usually made by people who perhaps are leaning into declining age, or someone who is about to enter the military, and want to note how they want their assets to be managed, as well as who will manage them. Mental incapacitation is then determined through a formal procedure of medical examination, and the results of which are going to be reflected in certification to be passed in conjunction with the springing power of attorney itself.

Types of Powers of Attorney

In general terms, a power of attorney is a legal file that proclaims a certain individual to be appointed to represent someone incapable in terms of doing tasks and dealing with their unfinished affairs. The person who is represented, or the person who makes the appointment is called the principal, and on the other hand, the person who is appointed is called the agent, or the attorney-in-fact. With that said, there are different kinds of powers of attorney, each entailing specific purposes. It is important to understand the different kinds in order to be able to distinguish them well from one another, hence making you more familiarized with the clear purpose of the springing power of attorney.

Durable Power of Attorney : The durable power of attorney is a legal document that allows the agent to manage the responsibilities and deals of the principal for several various reasons. It does not operate within a time frame and it is technically indefinite until the principal dies. The principal may state the reason why they request for a shift of power, and the reason is not limited to her or him becoming physically incapacitated to do so. The durable power of attorney immediately becomes effective the moment the agent signs it.Non-Durable Power of Attorney : A distinguishing characteristic of the non-durable power of attorney is its binding within a specific period of time. This means that in the document, the commencement date, the expiration date and the specific task to be done are specifically stated. Regardless of future incidents, the effectiveness of this type of power of attorney ceases outside of the expiration date, or whenever the stated transaction is completed.Special or Limited Power of Attorney : In this document, the principal instructs the agent to accomplish specific financial transactions which are very particularly limited and operate under strict circumstances. This may be buying property, withdrawing money from a specific bank account, or running a type of business model. The responsibilities of the agent are restricted to the narrow instructions of the principal only and do not exceed.General Power of Attorney : Unlike the special or limited power of attorney, the general power of attorney gives the agent the legal right to make all legal and financial transactions of the principal indefinitely. These extensive powers constitute actions such as bill payments, insurances, donations to charity, buying property, and a lot more. This power is in a much broader sense as compared to the limited power of attorney and basically gives the agent the freedom to control perhaps all of the principal’s affairs.Medical Power of Attorney : The medical power of attorney is a document that proclaims the ability of the agent to make healthcare decisions and medical transactions on behalf of the principal. This legal document, however, does not only take part between the agent and the principal themselves, but also operates with the consent of the presiding physician.Springing Power of Attorney : The springing power of attorney takes effect in a futuristic time frame with the condition being the mental incapacitation of the principal. This may be in the form of a durable power of attorney wherein the time frame of the specific transactions and affairs to be done is indefinite, or in the form of a non-durable power of attorney wherein the duration is limited. The number of tasks, or the list of which can be as many as the principal wishes. The semantics of the document is directly reflective of its nature, since it “springs” the responsibilities of the principal whenever an anticipated and/or inevitable happening arrives to the agent.

How to Get Springing Power of Attorney

The springing power of attorney is a very important document since it involves the principal entrusting perhaps all of her or his affairs and responsibilities to an agent, hence it is very important for them to carefully choose one. Aside from that, there are also specific steps to be taken in order to pass on a springing power of attorney, and these are steps to be taken meticulously and deliberately in order for less complications in the future to occur. This is how you can get a springing power of attorney.

Step 1: Prepare Springing Power of Attorney Document

Using the templates given above, you may download the document and fill up the important parts. It is important to be precise and specific regarding the extent of tasks you wish to be done, as well as who you choose to be the agent. Depending on the requirements of your local legal unit, print the springing power of attorney document with that many copies.

Step 2: Having the Document Reviewed

Have your lawyer thoroughly review the document to check for errors, or certain aspects that may possibly cause hiccups in the future. An attorney may easily recognize any legal glitches that people without legal training could miss. Revisions may be needed if your lawyer says so.

Step 3: Signing the Document

Both the agent and the principal have to sign the document. The two parties must go over the document together in order to make sure that all interests are met, and that all points are agreed with by them. It is also important to have the signing be done in the presence of legal assistance or your lawyer. In the case of medical power of attorney, the attending physician may need to agree with the transaction as well. With that said, the party must also take part in the signing.

Step 4: Having the Springing Power of Attorney Notarized

It is really important to have legal documents notarized in order for the content of the file to have legitimate legal impact. The private document now becomes a public utility, and involves the law in the case of complications rising in the future. Once a document is notarized, it becomes admissible in court and may serve as a credible evidence. Accountability is best achieved once notarization is done. This is why it is very crucial for you to undergo this process regarding the springing power of attorney. Therefore, this process entails the parties sealing the agreement, and ultimately finalizing it.

Step 5: Keeping The Copies

The reason for making copies of the document in the earlier steps is for the parties to have individual duplicates of it. The lawyer has to have a copy, as well as the agent and the principal. The copy is to be kept safe for later use.


Can someone contest a power of attorney?

If at any time, the principal herself or himself feels the need to alter the power of attorney, she or he may do so. However, in cases where the principal is incapacitated, a third party may be able to challenge a power of attorney. They may file a case in court and present their proof why the nullification of the power of attorney is in line with the best interest of the principal, and in the converse, the agent may defend herself or himself why the power should remain. Because of the gravity of the responsibilities and affected assets the power of attorney touches, it is inherently important for this authorizing document to be impermanent and subject to change.

Can a bank refuse a power of attorney?

With the influx of theft, financial abuse, and fraud cases, banks truly have their guard up and may refuse a power of attorney. A few valid reasons for a bank to refuse this may be because the document is very old, perhaps it is older than a decade the moment you decided to use it, or perhaps the principal has never verified her or his commitment to a power of attorney, which is an important piece of information banks should have, or in the case of someone reporting financial abuse to them. With that, you may be able to consult legal help in order to create solutions for this complication.

Can powers of attorney be given to more than one agent at the same time?

Yes. The principal may be able to give a power of attorney to more than one person, or specify a second agent in lieu of the first one in specific circumstances. However, it is important for you to think through whether or not the choice of giving it to two people, for instance, might create conflict in the future. Both pros and cons of the situation should be discussed between you and your lawyer as a preemptive measure in case anything happens.

Yes. Your control and power over your legal and financial decision still remains, as your agent only serves as your representative. You may instruct her or him what you want and do not want to be done. However,you are totally capable and validated to do the things that you want with your assets.

Understanding the dynamics of the different powers of attorney is important since these are things that we highly may possibly need in the future. The springing power of attorney is also one we ought to learn about because we will truly never know the things that await us. The exclusive nature of it being preemptive and very safe guarding of your assets and affairs makes it something worth thinking of because of the inherent uncertainty of life. With that, the deliberation for a trusted agent, as well as the familiarization of the required steps to secure the springing power of attorney is something we must keep in mind.