Power of Attorney is a legal concept that allows a person to act on behalf of another. It enables an agent to represent a client during a financial transaction, but there are situations where a caregiver can get Power of Attorney to make healthcare-related decisions for someone who is unable to do so.
Limited or special power of attorney is a subtype of PoA that restricts what the appointed agent can do. While Power of Attorney would grant an agent the authority to handle the totality of an individual’s finances, limited power of attorney grants an agent permission to carry out a specific task or limits PoA in another way.
Limited Power of Attorney Note By State
What Is Limited Power of Attorney?
A limited power of attorney form grants someone the authority to represent you and act on your behalf. It restricts this authorization to a specific task the agent will carry out, or it can limit PoA to a time frame.
The person you grant limited power of attorney to will be able to make decisions on your behalf in a specific context, but they won’t control all your finances and won’t represent you in areas that you didn’t cover when granting limited power of attorney.
For instance, a client can grant limited power of attorney to a portfolio manager to acquire a specific financial asset. You’ll find that limited power of attorney is common in real estate transactions where a homeowner can appoint a legal representative to carry out the sale of their home.
You can also appoint someone as your representative to discuss tax-related matters by using a limited power of attorney form. In fact, the IRS and state tax entities will not disclose any information until you fill out a limited power of attorney form to designate an official representative.
How Is Limited Power of Attorney Different From Other Subtypes?
A power of attorney form allows an agent to carry out financial transactions, make legal or medical decisions, and generally act on behalf of another person who can’t perform certain actions or make decisions.
There are different subtypes of PoA. With durable power of attorney, the agent can continue making decisions as long as the person signing the form isn’t able to, for instance, due to an illness or accident.
Limited power of attorney stops at some point. The person who grants limited power of attorney can decide when this authorization expires. They can decide to revoke this authorization after a time period or when the agent has completed a task.
Limited power of attorney can also restrict the authorization to a specific area or task. It’s possible to establish limited power of attorney for more than one person to have different representatives in charge of various tasks. With general power of attorney, this situation would result in conflicts and overlaps.
It doesn’t mean there are no limitations when establishing durable or general power of attorney. For instance, under New York state law, you can choose to revoke this authorization at any time, as long as you’re able to make that decision. If you’re not, a court can decide to terminate the authorization, for instance, if the agent you appointed isn’t acting in your best interest.
What Does a Limited Power of Attorney Form Look Like?
You can find free limited power of attorney forms online. These forms typically have the following sections.
The form will refer to you as the principal. The first section is about your personal information, including your name and Social Security Number.
The next section is about the person you’re appointing to act on your behalf. You should write down your attorney’s or representative’s name, address, and phone number.
Extent of the Authorization
You’ll find a few blank lines where you can list the things you authorize your representative to do. Be as specific as possible. Describe the actions you allow your agent to perform on your behalf.
State of Jurisdiction
Your limited power of attorney template should have a blank space for the state where you’re authorizing your agent to represent you. Even though most entities will recognize forms filled out in other states, it’s a good idea to fill out a form for each of the states where you want your agent to represent you.
Conditions for Revoking Power of Attorney
Describe how the authorization will end. You can set a date where the authorization will expire or explain that limited power of attorney will stop when your representative completes a task. Be as specific as possible when describing this task and what the outcome should be.
Note that you can amend this section. You decide to revoke power of attorney sooner by filling out a revocation form.
The agent you appoint will fill out the acceptance of appointment section by dating and signing the form. You should get signatures from two witnesses, along with their contact information. Lastly, you’ll have to sign the form yourself.
The appointee, principal, and witnesses should sign the form in front of a notary public. The notary public will then seal the form to make it official.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some common questions about limited power of attorney.