Legal Blog

The Weekly Scenario: Financial Power of Attorney

Question: Should I designate more than one agent in my Financial Power of Attorney?

Answer: You may appoint more than one agent on your power of attorney and it is fairly common to do so. By appointing multiple agents, the individuals you appoint will need to share the responsibility and divide up the tasks to be done. The question then becomes should multiple agents act jointly or may each agent to act independently (e.g., without the consent of the other). One advantage to having agents act by joint decision is that it provides some checks and balances. However, it can also be a challenge to get two agents to be available to perform tasks such as signing checks, signing tax returns or carry out the operations of a business. I am not a big fan of naming more than two agents who serve together because I think it can get cumbersome. However some clients with more than two children for example insist that all the children are named on the power of attorney for the sake of family harmony. Comment: In the case of children, an alternative is to name your children in succession so that no one child feels left out. It isn’t always ideal, but often an option. If you have any questions or would like more information please contact Steve Shane at:sshane@offitkurman.com | 301.575.0313.

ABOUT STEVE SHANE

Steve Shane Head Shot for webSteve Shane provides strategic counseling to clients in need of estate administration, charitable giving and business continuity planning while minimizing estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer tax exposure. He offers legal guidance to clients on asset protection and the proper disposition of assets in accordance with the client’s objectives, while employing tax planning techniques such as the use of irrevocable trusts, life insurance planning, lifetime gifts and charitable trust. He is also experienced with drafting documents for business planning, the incorporation and application for exemption for Private Foundations and the administration of decedents’ estates.

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