The Iowa durable power of attorney (DPOA) is a document one person, called the principal, uses to authorize another person, called the agent or attorney-in-fact, to represent them before governmental, financial, legal, and other institutions and third parties.
The term durable in the name of this document indicates that the power of attorney will remain valid and effective even if the principal loses legal capacity.
You can use a durable power of attorney in any situation where you are unable to represent yourself personally. This can be due to an incapacity, a difficult physical or mental state, or another disability (like dementia or Alzheimer’s disease), or simply because you are located far from the place where certain actions need to be taken.
Durable Power of Attorney Laws & Requirements in Iowa
Laws & Requirements
Signing requirement: The principal must sign the durable power of attorney before the notary public or other individual authorized to take acknowledgments. (§ 633B.105)
Statutory form: The Iowa Code provides the statutory form for a durable power of attorney at § 633B.301.
“Durable” definition: The meaning of “durable” according to the Iowa Code, §633B.102, with respect to a power of attorney, is not terminated by the principal’s incapacity.
How to Fill out a Durable Power of Attorney in Iowa
#1. Designate an Agent
Firstly, insert the details about the principal and the agent, their first and last names, and their mailing addresses.
When choosing the agent, you should look for a person who is of legal age and who has legal capacity. The agent should also be someone you trust, especially if you authorize them to make legal, medical, or financial decisions on your behalf.
Finally, you should look for someone who is located near the place where a certain action needs to be taken and who is willing to represent your interests.
#2. Grant Authority
Once you’ve determined the agent and entered their details in the power of attorney form, you should also determine the scope of their authority.
The Iowa durable power of attorney form has three options for determining the scope of authority:
Scope of Authority
General authority. With general authority, you will enable the agent to take all the necessary actions and interact with any third party when representing you. You can limit the general authority by writing down which actions the agent is not authorized to take.
Partial authority. Here, you will select the authorities you want your agent to have from the list of authorities provided in the durable power of attorney form. You can select the authority by signing your initials next to it.
Specific authority. This option gives you the most flexibility since you can define the scope of authority for the agent in your own words. In this way, you can insert the authorities that are not provided in the list of authorities on the durable power of attorney form.
#3. Ensure the Form is Durable
In Iowa, the power of attorney is durable by default, meaning that you must specify in the document if you don’t want your power of attorney to be durable.
#4. Sign the Form
After completing the power of attorney draft, the principal should sign the document before the notary public or another individual authorized to take acknowledgments.
#5. Notarize the Form
A durable power of attorney in Iowa must be notarized. The notary public will acknowledge the principal’s signature and certify the authenticity of the document.
#6. Store Your Durable Power of Attorney Form
After finalizing the document, you should keep the original copy of the durable power of attorney in your possession and store it in a safe place.
You can give one copy of the document to the agent, so they can prove their capacity to any third party they are interacting with on your behalf.
How to Revoke a Durable Power of Attorney in Iowa
In Iowa, you can revoke a durable power of attorney by making a verbal or written revocation or by creating a new power of attorney that will revoke any previous one.
However, the most common way of revoking the durable power of attorney in Iowa is to create a revocation letter. This document should include the full name and mailing address of the agent and the date of issuing the power of attorney.
After signing the revocation letter, you should send a copy to the agent and every third party they are interacting with on your behalf so the revocation can take effect.