If you are acting as power of attorney, you have an incredibly important responsibility with specific duties to carry out. As the agent, you must perform these duties in a way that ensures you are above reproach. Not doing so could make you liable and possibly negligent.
If you do not fully understand your responsibilities when acting as power of attorney, you may put yourself in legal jeopardy. As an agent, you should know the most common mistakes that people make when acting as power of attorney, so you can avoid them.
Improper documentation and recordkeeping
If you are an agent in a financial power of attorney, you have the ability to make financial decisions on the principal’s behalf. To avoid any suspicion of improper financial management or fraud, you must be sure to keep accurate financial records of any transactions you conduct or authorize on the grantor’s behalf. Your motivations for conducting financial transactions must be clear and always in the best interests of the principal so that you do not come under suspicion of improper management. The same advice applies to guardians in a guardianship, for example with elderly parents.
Ways to keep accurate records
One way you can avoid this mistake is by instituting a recordkeeping system. You should keep accurate notes about all transactions you make, as well as save any receipts, bank statements, and other documentation that relates to the financial transactions you make as an agent. In addition to receipts, keep notes about the times and dates of transactions as well as where they took place.
If you are an agent in a power of attorney or a guardian, you must understand the legal ramifications of your responsibilities. Being as well-informed as possible will help you avoid basic mistakes that could result in legal trouble for you.