Commentary Search

Power of Attorney

  • Published
  • By Major Scott A. Hodges
  • The AF Judge Advocate General's School
A power of attorney authorizes another person to act on your behalf. Powers of attorney are critical during periods of transition or absence, such as a deployment. There are two major types of powers of attorney.

A general POA is a very powerful document. A "general" POA gives your agent (a friend, your spouse, your parent, etc.) the right to conduct practically any business transaction you could do personally, including the right to sell your property and take out loans in your name for which you will be responsible. While a general POA may be helpful, it can also be very dangerous. In the past, some individuals have sold property, closed bank accounts, or run up credit card debts through use of a general POA. You should always ensure that your agent is someone that you trust with all of your money and legal decisions. If you lose trust in your agent, consult a legal assistance attorney about revoking the general POA.

A special POA gives someone the right to do a specific thing on your behalf. Special POAs are usually preferable for two major reasons. First, they expose you to less risk of misuse. Second, businesses and other entities are more likely to accept special POAs than general ones.

Visit the legal assistance website today and see the wide assortment of powers of attorney available: You can then fill out a worksheet with the needed information. When you go to the legal office they will be able to pull up the worksheet using your ticket number, and print off your POA and execute it right there.