Can I give an advanced power of attorney to my girlfriend?

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Can I give an advanced power of attorney to my girlfriend?

We are against the idea of marriage but can I somehow give her power of attorney on me in advance if I get in an accident or the like?

Asked on May 17, 2011 under Estate Planning, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You can definitely create a power of attorney in your girlfriend, or indeed in any competent adult. You may also shape it to only confer that power you wish: e.g. only to make medical decisions; or to make medical and certain economic decisions, but not be able to sell property; etc. Once you figure out what you'd like to do, any attorney should be able to draw it up for you.

If you and she should break up, make sure to formally revoke or cancel the POA--a power of attorney does NOT automatically expire or void when the parties' relationship changes. You would presumably not want an ex-girlfriend having what could amount to life-and-death power over you.


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