03.07.2016

What You Need to Know About Pennsylvania’s New Power of Attorney Law

By Christopher T. Powell Jr., Esq.

Attorney Chris PowellYou may have heard that the law regarding power of attorney in Pennsylvania has recently changed. The statute that governs powers of attorney for health-care choices has not changed, but the statute that governs financial and property transactions has.

A power of attorney gives another person (your agent) the power to make financial and property transactions for you. The person signing the power of attorney is the “principal.”

There are many significant changes to the law, too lengthy to discuss in this blog, but here are the highlights:

A power of attorney executed in Pennsylvania must be signed in front of a notary and two adult witnesses.

One of the new statements in the Notice to the Principal states, “It is possible for a principal to give the agent authority to give away all of the principal’s property during the principal’s life or to substantially change how the principal’s property will be distributed at his/her death.” This notice is meant to warn and advise principals not to sign a power of attorney unless they understand the document and that it accurately reflects their intent.

Lastly, there are several changes in the agent’s responsibilities when accepting a power of attorney. The state now requires that an agent sign a document acknowledging that the agent knows and is willing to comply with the responsibilities of being an agent

For more information, contact Powell Law at (570) 961-0777 or www.powell-law.com.

View the new law in its entirety on the state legislature website: http://www.legis.state.pa.us/WU01/LI/LI/US/PDF/2014/0/0095..PDF

Powell Law has offices located in Scranton, Moscow, Stroudsburg and Taylor, PA. Serving personal injury and criminal defense cases for 110 years, Powell Law’s professional attorneys will handle your case with compassionate expertise.

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