The Uniform Power of Attorney Act: Not a One-Size-Fits-All Solution
35 Pages Posted: 27 Sep 2014 Last revised: 20 May 2015
Date Written: 2014
A power of attorney is a staple of the modem estate plan, providing a simple way to avoid a guardianship and allowing an agent to manage a principal's assets when necessity or incapacity requires it. The nature of the power of attorney is to give an agent legal authority to act on the principal's behalf for financial matters. However, abuse by agents has caused reluctance among third parties to accept power of attorney documents, and this, in tum, has caused uproar for estate planners and their clients.
This article will examine the UPOA Act and the legislation from the adopting jurisdictions. The Commission identified six specific matters to be addressed by the UPOA Act. In Part II of this Article, those specific matters are identified in the provisions of the UPOA Act and compared to the legislation from the adopting jurisdictions. In analyzing the adopting jurisdictions, the legislative trends and differences amongst the adopting jurisdictions will be identified. Part III of the Article addresses and compares other topics in the UPOA Act and makes additional comparisons and distinctions to the adopting jurisdictions. Part IV identifies further modifications to the UPOA Act by the adopting jurisdictions. The Article also acknowledges the area of complete uniformity between the UPOA Act and the adopting jurisdictions in Part V. Throughout the discussion of the various aspects of the UPOA Act, suggestions and recommendations are made to the Commission in an effort to achieve its stated goal.
Keywords: power of attorney, uniform laws, UPOA Act, assets management, agent abuse, guardianships, third party refusal, estate planning, Uniform Law Commission, reforms, legislation
JEL Classification: K19, K29, K39, K49, G29
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation