Start a California Power of Attorney (POA) form available to appoint a trusted individual to manage your estate, act for you professionally, or make medical decisions on your behalf.
Last Update July 21st, 2021
What is a Power of Attorney
Power of Attorney is a legal document that allows an individual (known as the Principal) to confer special powers on another party that allows them to make decisions on their behalf. This can be for a number of different purposes.
However, no matter the reason for granting these exclusive powers, the appointed individual (known as the Attorney-in-Fact or Agent) may sign documents and express permission in place of the Principal themself. This can help to greatly speed up decision-making if the appointing authority is incapacitated or unavailable.
Types of Power of Attorney in California
There are many types of POA that can be used in California to appoint an Agent to make decisions for a principal. The most common variants include the following examples:
Durable: Durable Power of Attorney documents are invaluable tools for individuals planning how their estate will be managed in their old age, or in the event of sudden illness or disability. They allow the Agent to act for the Principal even if they become incapacitated.
General: A General Power of Attorney form permits an Attorney-in-Fact to perform a number of financial and legal tasks for their Principal. General POAs can operate over a long period of time, although they cease to be effective if the appointing authority becomes incapacitated.
Limited: A Limited Power of Attorney allows a Principal to grant time-limited powers to an Agent. This is usually to allow the Agent to complete a one-off task such as signing a contract.
Medical: Medical Power of Attorney is a durable form of POA that allows a Principal to appoint a person to make medical decisions for them if they become incapacitated.
Real Estate: Real Estate POAs are specially tailored documents that let Principals grant powers to an Agent for the purposes of managing real estate.
Power of Attorney Requirements in California
In order for your California Power of Attorney to be legally valid on signing, it is important to follow the key state requirements. In California, this means that:
All the information included in the document must be correct and accurate. This includes names, addresses, dates, and the powers that are being granted.
The Principal and Agent must both be sound of mind and must understand the agreement that they are signing in its entirety.
The document must be signed in the presence of 2 witnesses or a notary public.
How to get a Power of Attorney in California
A California Power of Attorney can be filled-in fully online with LawDistrict’s step-by-step form completion survey. All you need to do is answer the questions and add in your own information to create a fully complete POA tailored to your necessities.
Alternatively, prospective Principals can acquire both financial and medical documents from the California legislature in locations such as public libraries. These can either be filled-in in-person or with the help of a legal expert.
Power of Attorney FAQs
If you still have questions about how Power of Attorney forms work, our frequently asked questions and answers can help you get a better understanding of how these important legal instruments function. Read below to find out what POA form in California can be used to do.
Where Can I Get a Power of Attorney for California?
It is possible to fill out a California Power of Attorney form fully online. However, documents can also be acquired from local public institutions such as libraries or created specially by legal experts.
What is the Difference Between a General and a Durable Power of Attorney?
The big difference between a General Power of Attorney and a Durable Power of Attorney is when the powers can and cannot be used. When you create your California Power of Attorney as a General POA, its powers can only be used by the agent until they are withdrawn or the Principal becomes incapacitated.
Durable POAs on the other hand can continue to be used after the Principal is incapacitated. This makes them much better documents for estate planning in later life or to provide for medical necessities.
How to Sign as Power of Attorney?
In order to sign for the Principal once a California Power of Attorney has been completed, the Agent must bring the signed POA form to the bank or institution where the signing will take place.
Once the Agent’s identity has been confirmed, they will be able to sign the contract or document. To do this they must print the name of the Principal on the signature line and print their own name next to it as well as an indication they are signing for the principal as the POA before writing their signature.
How to Revoke a Power of Attorney in California?
If a California Power of Attorney needs to be revoked, the Principal should write to the Agent, requesting that they relinquish their powers. The appointing individual should also visit any institutions that hold a record of the POA and inform them it is no longer valid.
In the case that the Principal is incapacitated and cannot act for themself, it will be necessary to seek a court injunction to remove the powers. A judge will review the case and may appoint conservatorship over the individual which can annul any POAs in effect.