Power of attorney (POA) is a document that allows you to appoint another person to make decisions on your behalf. It gives someone else the authority to act on your behalf, such as selling your real estate or transferring your assets.
In Nevada, there are many types of power of attorney documents you can create. Each is designed to fit your individual needs and preferences.
Durable Power of Attorney
The Durable Power of Attorney in Nevada (DPOA) is a document that allows you to grant another person the authority to make decisions on your behalf. This can be for medical or financial matters.
Your agent must act in your best interests and be someone you trust. This person can be a spouse, children, friend, or anyone else you feel comfortable entrusting to take care of your legal and financial affairs.
DPOAs are a valuable estate planning tool because they allow you to specify your financial, medical and health care wishes in case something unexpected happens and you cannot make them yourself. The DPOA document also assigns an individual to carry out those wishes should the unthinkable happen.
To ensure that your DPOA is valid, it must be in writing, signed by you (the “principal”) and witnessed by two adults who know you personally. The principal must also be of sound mind and understand what they are signing.
General Power of Attorney
A power of attorney in Nevada enables a person to assign an individual, called an agent or attorney-in-fact, to carry out specific legal and financial transactions on their behalf. These forms also allow people to grant the authority to make medical decisions on their behalf.
Depending on the type of power of attorney in Nevada, it may be durable or temporary in nature. Durable documents remain operational even if the principal becomes mentally incapacitated or unable to handle their own affairs.
To be valid, a power of attorney must meet certain requirements. For example, it must be made by someone who is of sound mind and who has the capacity to understand its ramifications.
It must be notarized and signed by two witnessing parties (preferably a licensed notary). Additionally, it must contain specifics such as the agent’s names, duties, when the document will become effective, the principal’s incapacity, and its expiry date.
Medical Power of Attorney
When you are in a medical crisis, a medical power of attorney (POA) can make it easier to hand over your healthcare decisions to someone you trust. If you have this document in place, your agent can then make choices that are in line with your wishes and best interests.
If you are eighteen years of age or older, you can execute a medical POA in Nevada. You can do this by writing a legal document and having it attested by a notary public or two adult witnesses who personally know you.
A physician, advanced practice registered nurse or health care facility that in good faith accepts an acknowledged power of attorney for health care is not subject to civil or criminal liability or discipline for unprofessional conduct. The power of attorney can be terminated when the principal revokes the authority, the document had a termination date when it was drafted or the agent dies, becomes incapacitated or resigns.
Nevada law allows you to name a person, called the Alternative Agent, who can assume your POA’s powers on your behalf in case your primary POA becomes unable or unwilling to act. This is a useful option to consider if you have health issues that prevent your primary POA from making decisions for you.
The Principal should choose the proper form permitted in their State, discuss with someone they trust for the position of handling their financial duties, and sign in accordance with the State’s laws (usually in the presence of a notary public). This designation is only valid during the time the Principal is alive and competent.
You can also revoke the general power of attorney at any time by signing a form in the presence of a notary public. The revocation form can then be mailed to the Agent with certified mail with return receipt which gives official notice that the designation has been terminated.