A power of attorney is the ability act on another’s behalf in certain legal situations. In certain situations, the grantor may want to revoke these powers from an individual. If the POA has a specific termination date, it will cease to be effective as of that date. However, most powers of attorney are durable, which means they’re intended to be effective for an indefinite period of time.
There are two ways to revoke a durable power of attorney. First, with a few exceptions, a POA may terminate when the principal passes away. Of course, this isn’t helpful if a living grantor wants to make a change for some reason.
The second option is to execute a written revocation of the POA. In order for this to be effective, the principal must specifically identify the POA and provide notice to the attorney-in-fact. Until the attorney-in-fact receives notice of the revocation, the POA remains effective.
Thus, when revoking a durable power of attorney, it’s critical to be able to prove that the attorney-in-fact received the notice. If possible, the notice should be mailed by certified mail with a return receipt. Although not legally required, it’s also advisable to call, email or text the attorney-in-fact so that they are aware of the revocation as soon as possible.
Revoking a POA is simple when the attorney-in-fact is cooperative. However, there are many situations where the individual may not wish to relinquish control. For example, this may occur when the POA gives the attorney-in-fact significant control over financial matters.
If there is a reason to believe the attorney-in-fact is no longer trustworthy, a lawyer’s assistance may be necessary to ensure an effective revocation. Legal counsel could also help with other areas of estate planning, such as wills and trusts.