In Virginia, you can grant someone else the authority to act on your behalf through a power of attorney. To keep everyone honest, Virginia law requires a full account of any action taken within 30 days of the request as a form of accountability.
Understanding the types of power of attorney is important because they each do something slightly different.
General power of attorney
A general power of attorney grants the authority for someone to act on your behalf in financial matters. This can include managing bank accounts and making financial decisions. However, a general power of attorney becomes void if you become incapacitated.
Limited or specific power of attorney
A limited or specific power of attorney restricts the agent’s authority to make specific decisions. You may grant someone a limited power of attorney to manage a financial transaction while you are unavailable.
Durable power of attorney
A durable power of attorney remains in place even if you are mentally incapacitated. This type is useful for long-term financial planning and healthcare decisions.
Healthcare power of attorney or advance medical directive
A medical power of attorney allows an appointed person to make medical decisions when you cannot communicate. An advance medical directive can also include end-of-life care instructions.
Springing power of attorney
A springing power of attorney only begins on the occurrence of a specific event such as mental incapacity.
Financial power of attorney for real estate transactions
This power of attorney document is for real estate transactions. It allows an agent to handle real estate matters on your behalf.
Crafting a well-structured power of attorney ensures that a trusted agent can act in your best interest when you cannot do so.