Free California Power of Attorney (POA) Form

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.

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Last Update June 12th, 2024

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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.
  • 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 Power of Attorney to be legally valid on signing, it is important to follow the key California POA requirements, 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. A notary public must also be present at the signing to notarize the document.

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.

California Power of Attorney Sample

Before starting your own California Power of Attorney, it can help to look over an example document to understand how your final draft will look and what it will say. Simply view our POA sample now to get a feel for how these documents are written and appear once completed.

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Power of Attorney California Sample

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.

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Power of Attorney California Sample

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Preview of your California Power of Attorney

SPECIAL POWER OF ATTORNEY
WARNING TO PERSONS EXECUTING THIS DOCUMENT: This is an important legal document. It creates a Power of Attorney that provides the person you designate as your attorney-in-fact with the broad powers it sets forth. You have the right to terminate this Power of Attorney. If there is anything about this form that you do not understand, you should ask a lawyer to explain it to you.
I, _________, _________, _________, _________ _________, appoint _________ of _________, _________, _________ _________, as my agent (attorney-in-fact) to act for me in any lawful way with respect to the following initialed subjects.
This Power of Attorney is revoked and shall not be effective if I am incapacitated.

All acts done by the Agent pursuant to a durable power of attorney have the same effect, power, authority and inure to the benefit of and bind the principal and the principal´s succesors in interest. This power shall authorize my Agent to manage my affairs and to exercise all of my legal rights, including rights and powers acquired in the future. My Agent's authorized, but not limited to, exercise the power to:
I hereby revoke or terminate any and all general powers of attorney and special powers of attorney that previously have been signed by me.
This Power of Attorney shall be construed broadly as a General Power of Attorney. The listing of specific powers is not intended to limit or restrict the general powers granted in this Power of Attorney in any manner.

Any power or authority granted to my Agent under this document shall be limited to the extent necessary to prevent this Power of Attorney from causing, (i) my income to be taxable to my Agent, (ii) my assets to be subject to a general power of appointment by my Agent, or (iii) my Agent to have any incidents of ownership with respect to any life insurance policies that I may own on the life of my Agent.
RESTRICTION ON AGENT'S AUTHORITY
An agent that is not my ancestor, spouse, or descendant MAY NOT use my property to benefit the agent or a person to whom the agent owes an obligation of support unless I have included that authority in the Special Instructions.
I hereby grant to my Agent the full right, power, and authority to perform any and every act, power, duty, deed, right or thing necessary or advisable to be done regarding the above powers, as fully as I might or could do if personally present and acting.

Any power or authority granted to my Agent under this document shall be limited, to the extent necessary, to prevent this Power of Attorney from causing, (i) my income to be taxable to my Agent, (ii) my assets to be subject to a general power of appointment by my Agent, or (iii) my Agent to have any incidents of ownership with respect to any life insurance policies that I may own on the life of my Agent.
My Agent shall not be liable for any loss that results from a judgment error that was made in good faith. However, my Agent shall be liable for willful misconduct or the failure to act in good faith while acting under the authority of this Power of Attorney. A Successor Agent shall not be liable for acts of a prior Agent.
My Agent is not entitled to any payment, during my lifetime or upon my death, for any services provided under this power of attorney, and will not be entitled to reimbursement of expenses incurred as a result of acting under any provision of this Power of Attorney.
My Agent shall provide an accounting for all funds handled and all acts performed at any time upon my request or the request of any authorized personal representative, fiduciary or court of record acting on my behalf. If so requested, within 30 days the agent shall comply with the request or provide a writing or other record substantiating why additional time is needed and shall comply with the request within an additional 30 days.

This Power of Attorney shall be governed by the laws of the state of California. Moreover, I intend to have this Power of Attorney universally recognized and be admissible to recordation. In case that I become a resident of another jurisdiction, or obtain any form of property interest in another jurisdiction, it remains my intention that the laws of California shall continue to govern over this Power of Attorney to the extent that might be legally possible.
This Power of Attorney takes effect immediately. This Power of Attorney shall continue to be effective until my death. This Power of Attorney may be revoked by me at any time by providing written notice to my Agent.
Dated ____________________, ______, at _________, _________.



__________________________________
_________



Witness Signature: ___________________________________
Name: _________
City: _________
State: _________



Witness Signature: ___________________________________
Name: _________
City: _________
State: _________

A notary public or other officer completing this certificate verifies only the identity of the individual(s) who signed the document to which this certificate is attached, and not the truthfulness, accuracy, or validity of that document.

STATE OF _________,
COUNTY OF _________, ss:

On ________________ before me, _________________________________, personally appeared _________, who proved to me on the basis of satisfactory evidence to be the person(s) whose name(s) is/are subscribed to the within instrument and acknowledged to me that he/she/they executed the same in his/her/their authorized capacity(ies), and that by his/her/their signature(s) on the instrument the person(s), or the entity upon behalf of which the person(s) acted, executed the instrument.

I certify under PENALTY OF PERJURY under the laws of the State of California that the foregoing paragraph is true and correct.

WITNESS my hand and official seal.



________________________________(Notary Seal)
Signature of Notary Public

Notice to Person Accepting the Appointment as Attorney-in-Fact:

By acting or agreeing to act as the agent (attorney-in-fact) under this power of attorney you assume the fiduciary and other legal responsibilities of an agent. These responsibilities include:

1. The legal duty to act solely in the interest of the principal and to avoid conflicts of interest.

2. The legal duty to keep the principal's property separate and distinct from any other property owned or controlled by you.

You may not transfer the principals property to yourself without full and adequate consideration or accept a gift of the principals property unless this power of attorney specifically authorizes you to transfer property to yourself or accept a gift of the principal's property. If you transfer the principals property to yourself without specific authorization in the power of attorney, you may be prosecuted for fraud and/or embezzlement. If the principal is 65 years of age or older at the time that the property is transferred to you without authority, you may also be prosecuted for elder abuse under Penal Code Section 368. In addition to criminal prosecution, you may also be sued in civil court.

I have read the foregoing notice and I understand the legal and fiduciary duties that I assume by acting or agreeing to act as the agent (attorney-in-fact) under the terms of this power of attorney.

Date:
Signed:



_________________________________
_________
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