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Overview of the Power of Attorney

A person may be unable to act personally in relation to a transaction involving his or her property or business, due to poor health, being unavailable, or lacking experience in the relevant sector. In such a circumstance, he may engage an attorney to act in his stead in relation to those transactions. Power of attorney refers to the fiat of authority granted to the attorney to act on behalf of such a person. It enables an individual or business to carry out an action via a third party. This article is an exposition on the purpose, nature, and importance of powers of attorney.

Meaning and Nature of Power of Attorney
A power of attorney allows one person to legally designate another to handle specific tasks or make decisions about that person’s assets, finances, or the execution of legally binding agreements with third parties. It is a formal legal instrument which authorizes the donee to do in the stead of the donor anything which the donor can lawfully do. While the donee receives the power to act on behalf of the donor, the donor denotes the power to the donee. A power of attorney may be given orally or in writing, but it must be made by deed if it calls for “execution of a deed”.

This rule also applies to corporate entities seeking to designate someone to sign a deed on their behalf; in those cases, the power of attorney must be expressed in a deed.
Oral power of attorney is an authority not expressed in writing that is given to the donee to act on behalf of the donor. A power of attorney granted orally allows the donee to act on behalf of the donor without a written document expressing that power. For instance, A might give B the authority to manage any tenancy relationships in his newly constructed building on his behalf. An oral power of attorney is not advisable, given the risks of being contested, and the fact that it cannot be attested or registered…



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