Assessing the Strengths and Weaknesses of the Springing Power of Attorney

Since the springing power of attorney can only be executed after a finding of incapacity, it can prevent attorneys-in-fact from abusing their positions over long periods of time.

You might benefit from a springing power of attorney if:

  • You are in the armed forces and have received notice of an overseas deployment
  • You have legitimate concerns about the ability of your attorney-in-fact to manage complex assets or make higher-level medical decisions
  • You are not sure whether you can trust your agent to act in your best interests

However, even though the springing power of attorney can prove useful to military officers and testators unable to appoint a reliable attorney-in-fact, activating springing powers of attorney can be unexpectedly difficult—in part because it can take hours, days, or even weeks for medical professionals to establish whether the principal is actually incapacitated.

Philip J. Kavesh
Nationally recognized attorney helping clients with customized estate planning guidance for over 40 years.
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