The Missouri power of attorney is a document issued by one person—the principal—that authorizes another person—the agent—to represent them before governmental, financial, and other institutions, as well as legal and natural persons.
Unless it’s a general power of attorney, the principal must specify the institutions where the agent can represent them and the actions the agent is authorized to take on behalf of the principal. These two factors will determine the type of power of attorney most suitable for your needs.
Types of Power of Attorney in Missouri
Missouri Durable (Statutory) Power of Attorney Requirements
The principal can use a durable Missouri power of attorney to authorize the agent to represent them even after they have become disabled or incapacitated.
Missouri General (Financial) Power of Attorney Requirements
A general Missouri power of attorney enables the principal to grant general powers to their agent to represent them before all third parties and take all the necessary actions, according to Missouri statute (§404.710).
Missouri Limited (Special) Power of Attorney Requirements
With a special Missouri power of attorney, the principal can specify the actions the agent is authorized to take on their behalf. This type of power of attorney usually terminates after the agent completes the action(s) they are authorized for.
Missouri Parental (Minors) Power of Attorney Requirements
When a Missouri parental power of attorney is issued, it gives the agent or caregiver authority over a child. The principal must sign this document before the notary public.
Missouri Medical Power of Attorney Requirements
A Missouri medical power of attorney grants an agent the authority to make healthcare decisions on behalf of the principal. This document can specify if the agent is allowed to make decisions about life-sustaining treatments.
Missouri Springing Power of Attorney Requirements
This type of power of attorney becomes effective after a certain condition is fulfilled. In most cases, people use this document to enable the agent to act on the principal's behalf after the principal becomes incapacitated.
Missouri Vehicle Power of Attorney Requirements
A Missouri vehicle power of attorney is used to authorize another person to sell, buy, title, and register a motor vehicle on behalf of the principal.
Missouri Revocation Power of Attorney Requirements
The principal can use this type of power of attorney to revoke any previously issued power of attorney. After revoking a power of attorney, the principal should inform all the third parties that the agent is interacting with (e.g., banks, tax authorities, etc.).
Missouri Tax Power of Attorney Requirements
The principal can use a Missouri tax power of attorney to authorize their accountant or any other person to represent them before the Missouri tax authorities, obtain important information, and submit tax reports.
Missouri Real Estate Power of Attorney Requirements
A Missouri real estate power of attorney enables the agent to conduct any kind of activity related to the real estate. It can be issued just for completing a real estate transaction or for long-term property management.
Legal Requirements for a Power of Attorney in Missouri
To be considered valid by governmental agencies and other legal or natural persons, a Missouri power of attorney must comply with specific requirements.
Witnesses. The Missouri state requires the presence of two witnesses only when the principal is authorizing an agent in relation to the real estate (§442.360). However, even when it’s not required, you should provide witnesses for any kind of power of attorney to confirm the authenticity of the document. The witness should be over the age of 18 and cannot be the person named as your agent.
Mental capacity. The principal must be of sound mind when issuing the Missouri power of attorney.
Notarization. According to the Missouri Power of Attorney law, notarization is required only for a parental (minor), real estate, and durable power of attorney.
Who Can Be an Agent for a Power of Attorney in Missouri?
In Missouri, the agent or attorney can be any individual over 18 or any other legal entity with the legal capacity to represent the principal.
In most cases, an agent is a person of trust to the principal. This factor is crucial since a power of attorney transfers the authority to conduct some important legal actions on behalf of the principal.
For actions that require certain skills or specific knowledge, the principal should choose a professional, like an accountant or real estate agent, as the attorney-in-fact.
How to Create a Missouri Power of Attorney
Power of Attorney in Missouri
#1. Decide on Which Type of Document to Use
You should choose the appropriate type of Missouri power of attorney based on:
Your specific needs
The moment in which your power of attorney should become effective or terminate
The scope of authority you wish to delegate to the agent.
#2. Select an Agent
Choose a person with the legal capacity to act on your behalf before third parties and with the necessary knowledge to conduct certain actions. Above all, it should be a person you trust.
#3. Define the Agent’s Powers
Here, you can issue a Missouri general power of attorney and authorize the agent to take any kind of action on your behalf or specify the actions the agent is authorized to take on your behalf by issuing a Missouri special power of attorney.
#4. Download & Fill in Our Form
Once you've determined what type of power of attorney you need and found the agent, you can download one of the Missouri power of attorney templates from our website and enter all the relevant details.
#5. Get it Signed & Notarized
The principal should sign the Missoury power of attorney. In the case of the parental (minor), real estate, and durable powers of attorney, the signature and stamp of the notary public are also required.
#6. Safely Store the Original Copy
The principal should keep the original Missouri power of attorney and, if needed, make authorized copies of it.
#7. Provide Copies to Relevant Parties
You should provide a copy of the power of attorney to every third party your agent is interacting with on your behalf. This way, they will know that the agent is authorized to represent you and the limitations of the agent's authority.
#8. Update the Document as Needed
Every time you change some of the essential elements of your power of attorney, update them by issuing a new power of attorney.
How Long Does a Power of Attorney Last in Missouri?
A Missouri power of attorney can take effect the moment the principal signs it. The effective date can also be set at the moment some condition is fulfilled (the principal becomes incapacitated) or at a specific date, like in the case of the springing power of attorney.
A Missouri power of attorney generally ends when the principal becomes incapacitated unless it is signed as a durable power of attorney, in which case it remains in force. In some cases, the principal can issue a power of attorney for a specific action, which will automatically terminate after such action is completed.
Missouri Power of Attorney FAQ
You should use a power of attorney whenever you expect you will be unable to conduct a certain action in person. This includes cases when you are planning to move to another place or are not in a stable health condition.
A power of attorney enables another person to act on your behalf and take the legal, financial, and other actions you authorize them to take.
A Missouri power of attorney law provides that notarization is required for the parental (minor), durable, and real estate power of attorney. However, you can notarize any other type of power of attorney if you want to ensure its authenticity.
Having a power of attorney is advisable even if you have already drafted a will, as it protects your interests while you are alive, whereas the will safeguards them after your passing.