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By signing Senate Bill 1104 into law on July 8th, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf instituted amendments to laws regarding powers of attorney. The changes, for the most part, seem to be technical clarifications, however, they are worthy to note.
Generally, a Power of Attorney (POA) is a document granting authority to a person or “agent” to make legal and financial decisions on behalf of an individual (“principal”) who may be deemed unfit or incapable of doing so. Similarly, a Health Power of Attorney (HCPOA) grants authority to a named agent to make health care decisions on behalf of the principal.
This new law will be effective as of January 1, 2017, except for one change that is effective immediately. The immediate change relates to revocation of a health power of attorney. The law now allows for the court to revoke an HCPOA and requires the court’s approval if the agent requests a revocation.
Here are some of the other relevant changes that will be effective in 2017:
One to look out for: House Bill 665 may also institute additional changes to powers of attorney, including clarifying the exemption of commercial powers of attorney, among others. This bill has not yet been signed into law.
If you have questions regarding your POA or the POA of a loved one, call one of our estate planning and elder law attorneys, today: 610.820.5450
Thomas A. Capehart regularly counsels families on their estate planning documents, providing knowledgeable advice for a reasonable fee. Contact Tom directly to review your POA at 610.820.5450 or email@example.com.