A Massachusetts Power of Attorney is a type of legal document that can used in a variety of situations, usually when you are unavailable and need someone to act in your place. Some situations may be short term or for specific transactions. There are limited forms for these circumstances. Other situations may be more general and long term. In all cases, you need to make sure that the person you decide will act for you is someone that you trust implicitly and who is reliable. It will need to be someone you know well, usually a spouse, relative or friend. In some cases, such as with tax POAs, you might appoint a professional to act for you. In Massachusetts, the POA falls under of the Massachusetts General Laws.
Durable Power of Attorney – You can appoint a trusted friend or relative to act on your behalf for your financial and other matters which will start or continue through your incapacity (inability to mentally make decisions in your best interest)
General Power of Attorney – You can appoint a friend or relative that you trust to handle your financial affairs up until your incapacity (inability to make decisions in your own best interest). This document becomes void if you become unable to make your own decisions as determined by a doctor.
Limited Power of Attorney – You can appoint someone to handle a single transaction or deal with your affairs for a short period of time.
Health Care Proxy – You can appoint a person to represent your medical interests. In other words, someone that you appoint can make medical decisions on your behalf if you cannot.
Guardian of Minor Power of Attorney – You can appoint someone to be a temporary guardian for your child. This person will be able to make decisions on behalf of your children, such as medical and educational decisions.
Power of Attorney Revocation – You can revoke any previous POA that you executed in the past. You must be of sound mind to execute this document.
Real Estate Power of Attorney – For the right to select another person to handle property such managing tenants, negotiating a sale, or purchasing on behalf of an individual.
Tax Power of Attorney Form – You can appoint someone, usually a tax attorney or accountant to make filings on your behalf with the Massachusetts Department of Revenue.
Vehicle Power of Attorney – You can appoint a friend or relative or another person to handle your registration and titling issues with the Registry of Motor Vehicles.
How to Write
1 – The Durable Appointment Form To Designate Powers Should Be Accessed Here
This page will grant access through one of the three buttons (PDF, ODT, Word) displayed. Open the Durable Appointment paperwork using one of these buttons.
2 – The Principal’s Statement Of Intent Will Declare The Principal Agent’s Identity
The introduction paragraph of this form will clearly name the individuals directly involved with this delegation of Power and will require input from the preparer of this form.
On the first blank space, enter the Principal’s Full Name. This statement will define the Principal intent to grant Authority to the Attorney-in-Fact.
To round out the report on the Principal, enter the City or County where the Principal lives on the second blank space and the State where the Principal lives on the third blank space.
The next area in this statement will definitively name an individual as the Attorney-in-Fact that shall be entitled to wield the Principal Power delegated through this form’s execution. On the blank space, just after the words “hereby designate,” enter the Attorney-in-Fact’s Full Name.
As with the Principal, the two empty spaces immediately following the Attorney-in-Fact’s reported name will call for the City/County and State where the Attorney-in-Fact lives.
3 – The First And Last Days Of The Agent’s Principal Power Must Be Reported
The time period where the Attorney-in-Fact may legally utilize Principal Power (as per this paperwork) is called the Effective Period. Locate the heading “Effective Date.” By default, the Agent’s Principal Power will begin immediately upon the Principal signing of this form however, when the Paperwork terminates will need some definition.
If the Principal Power available to the Agent will not be affected or terminated because the Principal has been rendered disabled or incapacitated, the Principal will need to initial the first statement (Choice A).
If the Principal wishes the Agent to only begin utilizing the Principal Power (defined in this form) when the Principal is rendered incapable or incapacitated then he or she must initial the second statement (Choice B).
4 – The Exact Principal Powers The Agent Can Wield Must Be Specified
The Principal Powers conferred to the Agent through this document should be defined precisely. This may be done through a Principal review of the list provided in the “Powers OF Attorney-in-Fact” section. Each Power Description will be accompanied by a blank space preceding the statement. If the Principal wishes to grant the discussed Authority to the Attorney-in-Fact, he or she will need to initial the blank space corresponding to that statement.
The first definition, “Banking,” will discuss what kind of actions and decisions are available to the Attorney-in-Fact through this paperwork. If the Principal wishes to grant such Powers to the Agent, he or she will need to initial the blank space preceding the word “Banking.”
The Principal will be able to give the Attorney-in-Fact the Power to access and control the his or her Safe Deposit Box(es), once he or she initials the second blank space in this section.
The third space shall address the Principal’s “Lending Or Borrowing” practices. He or she may grant the Attorney-in-Fact the Principal Authority to participate in any of the actions defined in this paragraph, once the Principal initials the fourth paragraph.
The “Government Benefits” paragraph will allow the Agent or Attorney-in-Fact the Power to act as the Principal according to the manner described within it. If the Principal intends to grant these Powers to the Agent, then he or she should initial the blank space provided.
If the Principal intends to grant the Agent the right to engage in his or her “Retirement Plan” decisions and actions, then he or she must initial the blank space just before the words “Retirement Plan.”
The Attorney-in-Fact will have the Principal Authority necessary to act on the Principal’s Tax Matters, once the Principal initials the “Taxes” paragraph.
The Principal’s Authority regarding “Insurance” will be granted to the Agent by the act of initialing the “Insurance” paragraph.
The Authority the Principal exhibits in his or her “Real Estate” matters may be conferred to the Agent, if the Principal initials the “Real Estate” paragraph.
The “Personal Property” paragraph will give a detailed description of how the Attorney-in-Fact may act as the Principal in such matters. To grant the Attorney-in-Fact these Powers he or she must initial the corresponding blank space.
If the Principal wishes to grant the Agent his or her same Authority to Manage Property then, he or she must initial the blank line next to the words “Power to Manage Property.”
The Principal may grant the Approval required for the Agent to make, grant or transfer “Gifts” in his or her name by initialing the blank line before the word “Gifts.”
The Attorney-in-Fact may obtain Legal Advice or engage in Administrative Proceedings on behalf of the Principal and in the name of the Principal, once the Principal initials the blank space corresponding to the words “Legal Advice and Proceedings.”
The Principal may personally impose limitations, grant extensions, or dictate circumstances or provisions in relation to the Principal Powers discussed here by documenting such items on the blank line in the “Special Instructions” sections.
5 – Finalize This Paperwork’s Execution By Principal Signature
The Principal will need to enter the Date he or she supplies a Signature to this form using the three blank spaces in the “In Witness Whereof” statement. The format for presenting this date shall be the Numerical Calendar Day, the Name of the Month, and the Two-Digit Calendar Year.
Below this the Principal must provide a Signature on the same day indicated above by signing his or her Name on the line above the words “Principal’s Signature.”
6 – Additional Signature Parties Should Participate In This Paperwork’s Execution
The paragraph beginning with the phrase “We, the witnesses, each do hereby declare…” will require the acknowledging Signature of each Witness. There will be a “Witness’s Signature” line and an “Address” line where each Witness may sign his or her Name and enter his or her Address.
The Notary Public serving this paperwork will use the area below the Witness Statement to notarize this paperwork.
The “Specimen Signature And Acceptance Of Appointment,” requires the Attorney-in-Fact’s attention. Here the printed name of the Attorney-in-Fact must be presented on the first blank space in the statement. The Attorney-in-Fact must sign the “Attorney-in-Fact’s Signature” line.
The area directly below the Attorney-in-Fact signature has been reserved for the Notary Public notarizing this document.