A limited power of attorney form allows someone else (the “agent”) to step-in for a specific activity on behalf of another person (the “principal”). After the task has been completed, the form will either be voided by the principal or will become invalid after a certain date. This form is meant for temporary powers given to an agent (not long-term), and therefore is a non-durable document. LPOAs are valid for use in every state, although the laws regarding signing vary.
Signing requirements – Must meet the signing requirements of a durable POA in each State.
Also known as a:
- Special power of attorney
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
A limited power of attorney is a document that gives another person permission to handle specific a specific task (or tasks) for a certain period of time. Also known as a “special” power of attorney, the designation is commonly a one-time instance. This form must be signed in accordance with the durable signing requirements in the state.
- Check (writing)
- Minor (Child)
- Real Estate
- Single Transaction ($)
- Vehicle (buying or selling)
Getting a limited power of attorney is as simple as selecting an agent, signing it in accordance with state laws, and giving a copy of the document to the agent. Afterward, the agent may sign on behalf of the principal as long as they present the power of attorney document upon request.
The principal must decide the power(s) they would like to give to the agent. The powers cannot relate to health care decisions. Possible powers include receiving mail, managing real estate, signing a document, and so on.
Also known as an “Attorney-in-Fact”, the agent is the person that will have the authorization to handle requests on the principal’s behalf. Due to the limited scope of responsibilities, the principal does not have to worry about the agent’s negligence, like they would with a durable power of attorney (which remains valid even if the principal becomes incapacitated). The agent can include a:
- Family member (spouse, child, etc.)
- Close friend; or
- Trusted professional
When it comes time to create the form, it’s best to use the state-specific forms. Most often, this is a statutory form that does not contain durable provisions and requires the principal to handwrite the specific agent powers and instructions.
Expiration date – Most limited power of attorney documents have an expiration date or an event that triggers the form invalid.
In most states, a limited power of attorney is required to be signed in accordance with the durable version. Therefore, it’s best to view the Durable Signing Requirements for your State which will require the signature of a notary public, witness(es), or both.
Once signed by all required parties, a copy of the LPOA should be given to the agent(s). To perform the task(s) they were assigned, they may need to present the LPOA to an official entity. For example, if the agent is tasked with selling an automobile, the state DMV will commonly require the agent to display the LPOA before signing over the title.
- How Long is Limited Power of Attorney Valid for?
- Does a Limited Power of Attorney Need to be Notarized?
- Can a Limited Power of Attorney Expire?
The LPOA remains valid for as long as the principal wishes for it to last. Being a non-durable form, it is not intended to be a permanent contract. Having said, the form can be active for years if required. Overall, the contract will remain active for less than one (1) year, as the agent rarely needs more time to complete the task(s) they have been assigned.
This is dependent on the state in which the LPOA is being completed. Limited power of attorney forms fall under the same requirements established for durable POAs. The majority of the time it is a requirement for the POA to be notarized. If the agent needs to display the LPOA in a state other than the one it was signed, notarizing the document ensures it complies with all state requirements.
Yes, if the principal writes the day, month, and year in which the contract should automatically end. This can be found on the first page of the document offered for download. If the principal finds there is no section that provides a means of ending the LPOA early, they should manually include the section using Adobe Acrobat or Microsoft Word (to name a couple of options).
Step 1 – Principal + Agent Info
At the top of the page, enter the following:
- Name of the person completing the form (the principal);
- Principal’s social security number (8 digits);
- Name of the agent (the person acting on behalf of the principal);
- Agent’s full street address;
- Phone number (#) of the agent (preferably cell)
Step 2 – Power(s) Granted
Here, list any and all actions the agent will be authorized to perform on behalf of the principal. If more lines are needed, the principal can attach an additional form (be sure to note the attachment of an additional form on one of the five (5) lines provided).
Step 3 – Means of Revocation
This section allows the principal to specify how the LPOA can/will be terminated. Any number of boxes can be selected. The principal will need to write their initials next to the box(es) selected.
Step 4 – Principal’s Signature
The principal will need to enter the:
- State in which the agent will be carrying out duties for the principal;
- Date (day, month, and year) in which the LPOA is going into effect;
- Signature of the principal (can be written by hand or by using eSign); and
- Legibly printed name (first + last) of the principal.
Step 5 – Agent’s Signature
As a confirmation that they understand their duties, the agent will need to enter:
- Their printed name (can be written by principal OR agent);
- Their signature (eSignatures are OK); and
- Their full printed name.
Step 6 – Witness Signature(s)
If required by state law, the principal may need to have up to two (2) witnesses verify their signature onto the LPOA. Each witness will need to write:
- Their signature;
- Their printed name; and
- Address (street, city, state, and ZIP).
Step 7 – Notarization
The principal may be required by state law to have the form notarized. Alternatively, they can opt to have it notarized to increase the legitimacy of the LPOA. The section on the last page is to be completed by a Notary Public only.