What to do if my mother passed away this week and a question has arisen as to her “power of attorney”?

I am the executor as stated in her Will and had an understanding that once my mother passed, the “power of attorney” ceased to control her financial assets (bank and savings accounts) and all control over the estate passed to the executor.

Asked on November 17, 2013 under Estate Planning, Missouri


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

That is correct: a power of attorney ceases when the person who granted that power ceases. That is, it is only good to act in the grantor's stead for so long as the grantor lives. Once the grantor passes away, his or her belongings will be distributed as per his or will (or by the rules of intestate succession, if there is no will) and the executor or administrator will manage the process and the assets (except for any assets in trusts).


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