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Giving someone your power of attorney means that person can do generally any legal activity on your behalf.

This includes:

  • operating your bank accounts,
  • pay bills,
  • buy and sell real estate (if the POA document is registered with NSW Land Registry Service),
  • collect rent,
  • manage investments, and
  • sign legal documents.

Generally, such power of attorney becomes ineffective if the principal loses capacity, unless the document is an enduring power of attorney – in that the document endures the principal’s loss of capacity.

An enduring power of attorney lets that person conduct that legal activity on your behalf after you have lost capacity – that is, the mental ability to make and understand your own decisions.

Should you not have capacity, then you would not be able to make a valid power of attorney, as you would be deemed to not understand what you are doing by making such document.

It would be too late – you would have missed your opportunity.

Extreme FOMO – the Fear of Missing out.

In such instance, the Guardianship Division of the New South Wales Civil and Administration Tribunal (NCAT), may be tasked with making a financial management order.

Such application can be a very long and troublesome procedure, which would easily have been avoided by the preparation of an enduring power of attorney while you had capacity.

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