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How to revoke a power of attorney

If for any reason you become unhappy with the person you’ve appointed to make decisions for you under a durable power of attorney, you can revoke the power of attorney at any time. But you must take a few steps to ensure that the document is properly revoked.

First, you should put the revocation in writing. This revocation should include your name, a statement that you are of sound mind, and your wish to revoke the power of attorney. You should also specify the date the original power of attorney was executed and the person who was selected as your agent. Sign the document and send it to your current agent as well as to any institutions or agencies that have a copy of the power of attorney. If you’re executing a new power of attorney at the same time, you should attach it.

You will also need to get the old power of attorney back from your agent. If you can’t get it back, send the agent a certified letter stating that the power of attorney has been revoked.

Because a durable power of attorney is arguably the most important estate planning instrument, if you revoke one it is important to have a new one in place. Your elder law attorney can assist you in revoking an old power of attorney and drafting a new one.

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