Can the Person With Power-of-Attorney Change the Beneficiary of the Life Insurance Policy Even if the Insured is Not Incapacitated?
A Power of Attorney is given so a particular individual can act in behalf of another person. It is a legal document that contains the name of the agent, who is the person given authority to act in behalf of the principal, and the principal, who is the person who gives power to the agent.
Types of Power of Attorney
The General Power of Attorney is the most typical form used in businesses. Anyone who is given this type of power of attorney is authorized to do several types of business dealings in behalf of the principal thus third parties who do business transactions with the agent consider them in equal power with that of the principal.
Non-durable Power of Attorney
Non-durable Power of Attorney forms are used for limited time period. The length of effectiveness of the authority is often stated in the document to inform the public of its limitations.
Durable Power of Attorney
This is quite similar with non-durable power of attorney but it extends its effectiveness until the principal becomes fully incapacitated to handle his own affairs. Nevertheless, just like other power of attorney forms, it can lose its effect after the death of the principal.
Springing Power of Attorney
This is often used with principals that have medical problems. A doctor needs to certify the medical condition of the principal before it can be issued. This is provided in cases wherein the principal is not in the proper health condition to give verbal or written consents to assign an attorney-at-fact.
Special or Limited Power of Attorney
This type of document specifically states the scope of authority given to a person. Unless specified in the document, the agent has no authority to act in behalf of the principal.
Use of Power of Attorney
Power of attorney can be used for several reasons but basically it is used for the purpose of appointing an agent to handle business, medical, financial and even personal obligations which the principal is incapable of doing.
Cases where the policy holders becomes incapacitated
When the policy holder of an insurance policy becomes incapacitated then the agent listed in the power of attorney is authorized to handle the necessary revisions in the policy. This includes changing the name of the beneficiary if need be. There will be no questions asked as long as he submits a duly notarized power of attorney to show his authority.
Cases where the policy holder is still alive and fully equipped to handle business transactions but the agent listed in the Power of Attorney wishes to change the name of the beneficiary
It is possible for a person with general power of attorney to change the beneficiary on a particular policy nevertheless if it is contested by the policy holder then the request of the power of attorney will not be honored. Otherwise, if the document presented by the power of attorney is not a General Power of Attorney then the surety company needs to review the document if it indicates authority to do such changes. Otherwise, other documents may need to be submitted for the change to take effect. More often than not, the principal may be given a letter or a call just to confirm if the revision reached his consent. Otherwise it is always better if the policy holder is the one who will affix his signature on change of beneficiary forms to avoid further legal clarifications.