Maryland Power of Attorney

A Maryland power of attorney is a legal way of granting certain powers to a person you have chosen. You may want to grant a limited power such as signing a vehicle title for you, this can be done with a vehicle power of attorney. You may want to grant a person unlimited powers for signing documents, paying bills, selling property and many other financial and personal matters. A general power of attorney is the one you would use for this. It is important to use the correct form for the type of document you are trying to create and be sure you are using a Maryland power of attorney form. These forms are available at Legal Zoom.


Most of the powers of attorney you need for your daily matters are the non-durable type. This means that they can be used anytime you are mentally sound, but are void should you become unsound. For granting limited power you will normally be using a special power of attorney form. You might want to use a Maryland power of attorney for children or a Maryland power of attorney for property. This type of limited, non-durable powers of attorney are available to handle most any situation that requires a signature, but you are unable to be there to do it. You simply give the authority to someone to do it for you.


In Maryland the person you grant the power to is called an attorney-in-fact. Your attorney-in-fact can be anyone you have chosen to perform a certain function for you in your absence. You may grant limited powers to a friend, an auto dealer or loan agency, a real estate agent or even your spouse. It is very common to grant your spouse a general power of attorney and file it away with your other financial documents, just to have in case of an emergency. You may think your spouse can legally sign anything you can but that is not always the case.


Your Maryland estate planning attorney is probably going to want you to have at least one power of attorney on file listing your spouse as the attorney-in-fact. There are many reasons for this, but keep one thing in mind when you do it. The state of Maryland does not automatically void this power of attorney if you get a divorce. This is something you must take care of yourself.


Another concern for your estate attorney should be making sure you have the proper durable and non-durable powers of attorney. There is a big difference between the two. Normal powers of attorney become void if you are ever declared mentally incapacitated. The best way to be sure your spouse is always able to make medical and financial decisions for you, if you are unable to, is with the use of a durable power of attorney. The two types that will probably be recommended to you are the Maryland springing durable financial power of attorney and the Maryland springing durable medical power of attorney.


It would be a good idea to discuss with your lawyer the need for a Maryland power of attorney, especially the durable ones. They are the ones where it is critical that everything is done correctly so that if they are ever needed they are, in fact, valid.


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--by Beth Heikkinen
Marquette, Michigan
I just want to thank you for this site. It answered my questions. I think many people that do research on the net take it for granted and when they find what they are looking for they forget "someone put time, money, etc into providing me with this information."

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