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Virginia Power of Attorney basics

A Virginia Power of Attorney makes it possible for you to appoint a friend, family member, or loved one to handle your financial, legal, and medical affairs in the event you are unable to act or make decisions on your own behalf. The person you appoint is called the Agent and you are the Principal. Your Power of Attorney (POA) can start whenever you wish and end on a specific date or upon your death.


How do I get a Power of Attorney in Virginia?


You can use the Rocket Lawyer Virginia Power of Attorney document if:

  • You wish to give someone broad authorization to act for you if you are absent or incapacitated.
  • You wish to give someone power to handle certain limited financial or legal issues in your absence, or if you become ill.
  • You wish to authorize someone to act on your behalf in case you become legally incompetent or incapacitated.

You have the option to designate the Power of Attorney as "general," granting broad powers to control your financial, health, legal, and other matters, or "special," granting power for only specific situations.


Does a Power of Attorney need to be recorded in Virginia?


The Virginia Power of Attorney is specific to the laws of the state of Virginia and should be created by residents of Virginia and signed in front of a Virginia notary public. Typically, a Power of Attorney does not need to be recorded unless it is necessary for a real estate transaction.


What is a Durable Power of Attorney in Virginia?


A Durable Power of Attorney is a Power of Attorney that continues in place even if you become incapacitated. A General Power of Attorney typically ends if you become incapacitated.


What are the four types of Power of Attorney?


There are generally four types of Power of Attorney that can be created, and they are:

  • General Power of Attorney: Provides broad authorization for the Agent to act on behalf of the Principal.
  • Durable Power of Attorney: Gives the Agent decisionmaking authority even if the Principal becomes incapacitated.
  • Special/Limited Power of Attorney: Authorizes the Agent to act or make decisions with respect to single or limited situations. For example, the Agent is authorized to sell the Principal's car while the Principal is out of town on vacation.
  • Springing (Durable) Power of Attorney: Agent's authority takes effect when the Principal becomes incapacitated.


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