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Can I revoke a power of attorney? – Wills/ Intestacy/ Estate Planning



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A power of attorney is a document that appoints one or more
individuals to have the authority to manage your assets and make
legal and financial decisions on your behalf.

An enduring power of attorney continues to have effect if you
were to lose your mental capacity.

Your attorney must act in your best interests.

However, as time goes on, your circumstances may change or your
relationships with your attorneys may break down and you may wish
to change who you have appointed.

In order to revoke an enduring power of attorney, you need to
serve notice of the revocation on the attorneys appointed. The
revocation needs to be in writing, signed by you and witnessed.

Section 47 of the Powers of Attorney Act (NSW) 2003 provides
that an attorney is entitled to rely on a power of attorney if they
are unaware of the termination or suspension of the document.
Therefore, you must serve written notice on the attorney and have
them acknowledge receipt of the revocation.

If the Power of Attorney is registered with NSW Land Registry
Services, you should also register the revocation with this
agency.

You may need to consider updating your documents in the
following scenarios:

  • If you have separated or divorced from a partner who has been
    appointed as your attorney.

  • If you have had a breakdown of relationship with an
    attorney.

  • If you are concerned that an attorney is misusing funds.

  • If you are concerned that an attorney may not act in your best
    interests.

It is important to review your documents as soon as your
circumstances change. If you lose your mental capacity, then you
lose the ability to change your documents.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.

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