How Do I Create a Power of Attorney for a Person Who Will Be Deported?
A power of attorney is a legal instrument that individuals create and sign that gives someone else the authority to make certain decisions and act for the signer. The person who has these powers is called an "agent" or "attorney-in-fact." The signer is the "principal." As a principal, if the principal's decisions conflict with those of the agent, the principal's decision will govern, assuming that the agent confers with the principal prior to taking an action. If an agent has acted on the principal's behalf and acted within the scope of authority granted by the power of attorney, then the principal may be obligated by the terms and conditions of his actions.
The person designated to be the agent assumes certain responsibilities. The agent is obligated to act in the principal's best interest. The agent must always follow the principal's directions. Agents are "fiduciaries," which means that the agent must act with the highest degree of good faith in behalf of their principals. The agent must keep his money separate from the principal's; keep detailed records concerning all transactions he engages in on the principal's behalf; not stand to profit by any transaction where the agent represents the principal's interests; and not make a gift or otherwise transfer any of the principal's money, personal property, or real estate to himself unless the power of attorney explicitly states he can do so. An agent who acts against the principal's interest for his own gain, or acts outside the authority granted in the power of attorney, may be held personally liable. If an agent acts within his authority in the agent's best interest, the agent won't be personally liable for debts unless the agent has a separate agreement, such as a co-signer agreement, in regard to the debt.
If the agent has authority for financial matters, bills owed, such as medical expenses, should be paid by the agent if the principal is unable. The agent may also raise any defenses or offsets against creditors' claims.
The terms of the power of attorney govern the extent of the agent's authority. A power of attorney may be limted so that it only authorizes action to be taken for a specific transaction(s) or for a specified time period.
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Please see the following NC statutes:
§ 32A-9. Registered durable power of attorney not affected by incapacity
or mental incompetence.
(a) All acts done by an attorney-in-fact pursuant to a durable power of
attorney during any period of incapacity or mental incompetence of the
principal have the same effect and inure to the benefit of and bind the
principal and his successors in interest as if the principal were not
incapacitated or mentally incompetent if the power of attorney has been
registered under the provisions of subsection (b).
(b) No power of attorney executed pursuant to the provisions of this
Article shall be valid subsequent to the principal's incapacity or mental
incompetence unless it is registered in the office of the register of
deeds of that county in this State designated in the power of attorney,
or if no place of registration is designated, in the office of the
register of deeds of the county in which the principal has his legal
residence at the time of such registration or, if the principal has no
legal residence in this State at the time of registration or the
attorney-in-fact is uncertain as to the principal's residence in this
State, in some county in the State in which the principal owns property
or the county in which one or more of the attorneys-in-fact reside. A
power of attorney executed pursuant to the provision of this Article shall
be valid even though the time of such registration is subsequent to the
incapacity or mental incompetence of the principal.
(c) Any person dealing in good faith with an attorney-in-fact acting
under a power of attorney executed under this Article shall be protected
to the full extent of the powers conferred upon such attorney-in-fact,
and no person so dealing with such attorney-in-fact shall be responsible
for the misapplication of any money or other property paid or transferred
to such attorney-in-fact.
§ 32A-8. Definition.
A durable power of attorney is a power of attorney by which a principal
designates another his attorney-in-fact in writing and the writing
contains a statement that it is executed pursuant to the provisions of
this Article or the words "This power of attorney shall not be affected
by my subsequent incapacity or mental incompetence," or "This power of
attorney shall become effective after I become incapacitated or mentally
incompetent," or similar words showing the intent of the principal that
the authority conferred shall be exercisable notwithstanding the
principal's subsequent incapacity or mental incompetence. Unless the
durable power of attorney provides otherwise, where the grant of power or
authority conferred by a durable power of attorney is effective only upon
the principal's subsequent incapacity or mental incompetence, any person
to whom such writing is presented, in the absence of actual knowledge to
the contrary, shall be entitled to rely on an affidavit, executed by the
attorney-in-fact and setting forth that such condition exists, as
conclusive proof of such incapacity or mental incompetence, subject to
the provisions of G.S. 32A-13.