Legal Blog

The Weekly Scenario: Revoking A Financial Power of Attorney

Question: Can I revoke my financial power of attorney if I am unhappy with the agent I named to serve in the event of my incapacity?

Answer: Yes, assuming you are competent, you may revoke the power of attorney at any time and there are a few measures you can take to revoke the document.

Most powers of attorney say that the former power of attorney is automatically revoked by the new power of attorney. But if your power of attorney is on file with a bank or other financial institution, you should affirmatively revoke the old power of attorney in writing.

The revocation should indicate your intention to revoke the power of attorney and specify the date the original power of attorney was executed and the person selected as your agent. Most importantly, you should send the notice of revocation to your old agent (and the financial institution) who has a copy of the old power of attorney (and in some cases attach a copy of your new power of attorney that is now in place).

Comment: If you do revoke your current power of attorney, it is a good idea to establish a new power of attorney as soon as possible with the person(s) that you wish to serve as your agent(s).

As always, if you have any questions or would like to learn more, please let me know.


Steven E. Shane

Steve 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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