You may not always be available to deal with some of the important transactions or decisions in your life. If you don’t want your plans or businesses in New York to stop in those times, you’ll need someone to act for you. That’s where an attorney-in-fact comes in. This person is authorized to act on behalf of another in legal or financial matters under the power of attorney. Given the substantial nature of the authority granted to an attorney-in-fact, it is crucial to consider who you choose for this role carefully.
Elements of a good attorney-in-fact
When choosing an attorney-in-fact, you must make sure they possess the following qualities.
Good temperament and adequate knowledge
A good attorney-in-fact should have the right temperament and adequate legal and financial knowledge to handle the responsibility. Dealing with important matters, such as property, finances and healthcare, can sometimes be complex, hence requires a level-headed individual who can work with almost everyone to make the best decisions for you. They must also have the ability to understand and execute estate planning documents, as they will likely be handling your affairs in the event of your incapacitation.
Another quality is trustworthiness. An attorney-in-fact must have a strong sense of integrity and act in your best interest at all times. They should also be organized, detail-oriented and able to keep accurate records of their actions. You should be able to ask them about any transactions or decisions they made on your behalf and receive a clear explanation.
Be available and accessible
Finally, a good attorney-in-fact should be available and accessible. In case of emergencies or urgent matters, they should be reachable and able to act promptly. It is important to discuss their availability beforehand and make sure it aligns with your needs.
To sum it up, selecting the right attorney-in-fact requires careful consideration and thoughtful deliberation. Remember, this person will stand in your shoes, making decisions that could significantly impact your life. Therefore, it’s not just about who you trust but who also possesses the right skills, knowledge and availability. After all, the goal here is peace of mind, knowing you have made a sound decision for your future.