If you’ve been a designated as someone’s “Power of Attorney,” they’ve given you a big responsibility. The job is different than managing your own money. You are a fiduciary with a duty to the principal (the person who selected you). You have to safeguard the assets of your “principal,” for their wellbeing and benefit. You need to stay aware of all sources of income, file their income taxes on time, make prudent decisions on whom you hire or sign a contract with, and maintain their assets in a way that doesn’t disrupt their estate plan. You need to have a paper trail for all expenditures (checkbook or credit card records) and save all receipts. You need to keep excellent records so that you’ll be “above reproach” if a third party is ever looking at what you’re doing.
The federal consumer finance agency has published a series of booklets that you may find very useful. To order, click on this link:
Always keep in mind that at any time, someone could start looking over what you’re doing — so expect the best, but plan for the worst.
For legal advice on issues concerning Agent under Power of Attorney, Trustee, Guardian or Conservator, call us at 732-382-6070