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Time frame for Power of Attorney

A power of attorney can expire depending upon the type of Power of Attorney granted.  A Power of Attorney may be limited to a specific transaction or may mention an expiration date after which its powers are no longer valid. A Power of Attorney continues to be in force until it is revoked or expires according to its terms. The expiration of a particular Power of Attorney also depends on the laws of the country in which the power is being used.

Expiration of a general power of attorney

The owner of the general power of attorney offers broad powers that allow the agent to perform every action and sign almost any document the holder could have done if personally present. This type of power of attorney does not expire even if the holder of such a document becomes incompetent unless the general power of attorney has a specific expiration date or if the principal revokes it in writing. Expiration of power of attorney is only valid if there are specific clauses that mention the expiry of the legal document.

Expiration of special power of attorney

Specific or limited power of attorney is used for performing limited or specific transactions. Such power of attorney may expire automatically after fulfilling specific duties. The specific power of attorney can be issued for a limited time, which may mention an expiration date after which the powers are no longer valid.

A Power of Attorney may expire in any of the following situations:

  • The principal dies

Powers of attorney expire as soon as the principal dies. No power of attorney survives the death of the principal regardless of the holder of the power of attorney wishes or intended to keep the powers in force. The agent can still enter into binding agreements as long as the agent is unaware of the principal’s death.

  • Agent dies

In the event of the death of the agent, the power of attorney may expire. The powers automatically expire when the holder is not able to find a substitute or alternative for the agent.

  • Revocation of power of attorney

The principal or the agent has the right to revoke the power of attorney for specific reasons. It is a written confirmation to cancel the powers granted to the agent (the person appointed to act as a power of attorney).

  • The accomplishment of the purpose

In such cases, the power of attorney may expire when is used for a specific transaction.  For example, a principal may name an agent to sign closing documents for one real estate transaction.  Once the transaction is complete, the powers expire.

  • Court Order:

It is possible for a power of attorney to be ruled invalid by a competent court.  This would usually happen if it could be proven that the owner was of unsound mind or had been unduly influenced or illegally misrepresented for personal causes.

  • If the agent quits

In some cases, an agent has the right to quit from his obligation granted, if the holder of the power of attorney is mentally incapable to perform his obligation towards the agent.

  • Incapacity of principal (owner of power of attorney)

In order to grant someone else the power of attorney, a principal must be of sound mind. This means the principal should be legally capable of understanding the terms of the document. Once the principal loses this ability to make decisions, he or she can no longer grant powers of attorney. Any powers granted by the principal prior to becoming incapacitated are automatically revoked. there is one key exception to this rule. If a principal granted a general power of attorney, the agent can still make decisions even if the principal later becomes incapacitated.

What is Power of Attorney? How to Prepare a Power of Attorney in UAE

Power of attorney services in the UAE

There are several other reasons for expiry of a power of attorney in UAE. if you have any doubt regarding the expiry of a power of attorney you can contact HHS lawyers and legal consultants. Our lawyers can help you draft a power of attorney for simple tasks or for special procedures. Please contact our law firm in UAE for more information regarding the expiry of your document.

Hassan Humaid Al Suwaidi., LL.B. is a Senior Partner in HHS Lawyers. He has 20 years of experience dealing with high-value and complex cases. Frequently featured in local and international legal directories and commended for his ability to attain favorable outcomes for clients, Hassan has been involved in some of the largest legal settlements. A major part of his work is providing expert legal advice on UAE legislation and acting for individuals and businesses during disputes and litigation. Read more