The Maine durable power of attorney (durable POA) is a legal document used for delegating powers from one person to another. The person who delegated the powers is called the principal, while the person representing the principal is called the agent or the attorney-in-fact.
The term “durable” means that the power of attorney will remain valid and effective even if the principal becomes incapacitated. The durable power of attorney stops being effective only if the principal passes away or terminates it.
The principal uses the durable power of attorney when they are not able to personally complete a certain action or make a certain decision. This can often be caused by the principal’s mental disability, such as dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.
Durable Power of Attorney Laws & Requirements in Maine
Laws & Requirements
Signing requirements: The principal or another person in their presence must sign the Maine durable power of attorney in front of the notary public or other body authorized to take acknowledgments. (§ 5-905(1))
Statutory form: The Maine Statutes don’t provide the statutory form for a durable power of attorney. However, article 5-951 provides the Agent's certification form.
“Durable” as defined by the state law: According to article 5-902(2), “Durable,” with respect to a power of attorney, means not terminated by the principal’s incapacity.
How to Fill out a Durable Power of Attorney in Maine
#1. Designate an Agent
Firstly, insert the full names and mailing addresses of the principal and the agent.
When choosing the agent, you should look for someone who is of legal age and who has the capacity. Moreover, the potential agent should be someone you trust, especially if you are authorizing them to make decisions about your finances or health care.
Finally, the agent should be willing to represent you and protect your best interests.
In this section, you can also name the successor agent. Their role is to represent you in case the primary agent becomes incapacitated or is otherwise unable to do so.
#2. Grant Authority
Here, you should determine the scope of authority for the agent. This means that you should define what actions the agent is authorized to take.
There are three most common ways to determine the scope of authority:
Scope of Authority
General authority. With this method, you will enable the agent to take all the necessary actions when acting on your behalf and to interact with any third party. You can also limit the general power of attorney by naming the activities the agent is not authorized to take.
Partial authority. Here, you will select which authorities your agent can have by selecting them from the list of authorities provided in the durable power of attorney template. You will select the authorities by signing your initials next to the relevant authority.
Specific authority. This method enables you to define the scope of authority in your own words by writing it in the designated area.
#3. Ensure the Form is Durable
In Maine, the power of attorney is durable by default, meaning that if you want your power of attorney to be non-durable, you must explicitly state so in the document.
#4. Sign the Form
After finalizing the document, you must sign it before the notary public or other body authorized to take the acknowledgments.
#5. Notarize the Form
The notary public will then put their stamp and signature on the document and acknowledge the principal’s signature and the overall authenticity of the document.
#6. Store Your Durable Power of Attorney Form
You should keep the original durable power of attorney in your possession and store it in a safe place. You can also give one copy to the agent so they can prove their capacity to the third parties they are interacting with on your behalf.
How to Revoke a Durable Power of Attorney in Maine
The best way to revoke the Maine durable power of attorney is to issue a revocation letter. This document should include the full name and mailing address of the agent, as well as the date of issuance of the power of attorney you want to revoke.
To make the revocation effective, you must give one copy to the agent and to every third party the agent is interacting with on your behalf.
Apart from making the revocation letter, you can also make the verbal revocation or issue a new power of attorney that revokes the previous one.