The New Mexico durable power of attorney is a legal document that one person, called the principal, uses to authorize another person, called the agent or the attorney-in-fact, to represent them before governmental, financial, legal, and other institutions and third parties.
The word durable means that the principal’s potential incapacitation won’t affect the validity and effectiveness of the durable power of attorney.
The principal can use the durable power of attorney in any situation where they are not able to personally complete a certain action or make a certain decision. Some of the reasons why this could happen are that the principal has a certain condition preventing them from doing so, like dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, or is located far from the place where a specific action needs to take place.
Durable Power of Attorney Laws & Requirements in New Mexico
Laws & Requirements
Relevant laws: Chapter 45, Article 5B - Uniform Power of Attorney Act
Signing requirements: The principal and the agent must both sign the durable power of attorney. However, only the principal's signature must be notarized. (§ 45-5B-105)
Statutory form: The New Mexico Statute provides the statutory power of attorney form at § 45-5B-301.
“Durable” definition: According to § 45-5B-102(B), “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 New Mexico
#1. Designate an Agent
Firstly, you should enter the details of the person who is going to represent you as your agent. You should enter their full name, mailing address, and any other information that might be relevant to your particular case.
When choosing an agent, you should look for someone who is an adult and has legal capacity. Moreover, it should be the person you trust, especially if you authorize them to make decisions about your finances and health care.
In this section, you can also name the successor agent. They will act in case the primary agent loses capacity or is otherwise unable to represent you.
#2. Grant Authority
Once you have determined your agent, it’s time to define their scope of authority.
Here, you can use three main models for determining what their scope of authority will be:
Scope of Authority
General authority: With this option, your agent will be able to take all the necessary actions and interact with all third parties on your behalf. You can limit the general authority by providing a list of activities the agent is not authorized to take part in.
Partial authority: Here, you can select the activities you want to include in your agent’s scope of authority by selecting them from the list of authorities provided in the durable power of attorney form. You can make the selection by signing your initials next to the relevant authority.
Special authority: This option enables you to define the scope of authority in your own words. This is the most flexible option since you can include the activities that are not provided in the durable power of attorney form.
#3. Ensure the Form is Durable
In New Mexico, the power of attorney is durable by default. If you want your power of attorney to be non-durable, you must specify so in the document.
#4. Sign the Form
Both the principal and the agent must sign the durable power of attorney. The principal’s signature must be notarized, while the agent can sign the document even without the notary public's acknowledgment.
#5. Notarize the Form
The notary public will confirm the authenticity of the principal’s signature and the overall authenticity of the document.
#6. Store Your Durable Power of Attorney Form
After finalizing the durable power of attorney, you should keep the original copy in your possession. You should also make sure to store it in a safe place, like the safe deposit box or somewhere in your home.
You can give one copy to the agent representing you so they can prove their capacity to third parties.
How to Revoke a Durable Power of Attorney in New Mexico
You can revoke a durable power of attorney in New Mexico by issuing a revocation letter. This letter should include the name of the agent and the date of issuance of the power of attorney you want to revoke. Additionally, you can include any other information that will help the parties individualize the durable power of attorney you wish to revoke.
To make the revocation effective, you should send one copy to the agent and to every third person the agent is interacting with on your behalf.