Case Study: Take Back the Power
Steve updated his estate plan shortly after he relocated to a new state because of a job promotion. About three months into his new job, Steve had an accident on his riding lawnmower. The accident kept Steve from traveling back to his home state to finish the closing of his house and bank accounts.
Luckily, Steve had his attorney in the state he moved to prepare a durable power of attorney along with his other estate planning documents. He named his brother, Mike, as his agent for the power of attorney. This document gave Mike the ability to perform financial transactions on Steve's behalf, while Steve was unable to make the transactions himself.
You can create a valid power of attorney for finances in most states if you are an adult, at least 18 years of age and of sound mind.
This came in very handy, as Mike was able to work with the realtor and banker in Steve's hometown to finish the house closing and close out Steve's bank accounts. If Steve had not included a power of attorney in his overall estate plan, Mike would have been unable to sell the house or close the bank accounts. These important actions would have had to wait until later when Steve could travel again.