It is a good idea for everyone to have a power of attorney, both for health care matters, and for financial matters. A power of attorney allows another person to act in your place in the event that you are temporarily or permanently disabled and cannot act for yourself. It is critical to note that a power of attorney is a very powerful document and, in the wrong hands, can be used to commit fraud.
Many times, the person appointed in the financial power of attorney (the “attorney-in-fact”, or “agent”) is not informed that he was named for this role and is never given any instructions on how to be an agent. Instead, some emergency occurs and the agent does the best he can. Accordingly, the North Carolina legislature recently enacted a law to help an agent understand his job. N.C.G.S. 32C-1-114 sets out the duties of the agent under a power of attorney. See: