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Virginia Uniform Power of Attorney Act

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Jonathan Kinney
BKK Wills, Trusts and Estates Newsletter
November 2010

Effective July 1, 2010, Virginia adopted the Uniform Power of Attorney Act, joining a handful of other states that have adopted the Uniform Act in some form or fashion.

Some of the highlights of the act are:

The Default Rules

The act protects third parties who act in good faith in accepting an acknowledged power of attorney without actual knowledge that the power of attorney is forged, void, invalid or terminated.

Generally, a third party (such as a financial institution) must either accept an acknowledged power of attorney or request a certification, translation or opinion of counsel within seven business days of presentment of the power of attorney. Upon receipt of the certification, translation or opinion of counsel, the third party must accept the power of attorney within five business days after receipt of the requested document. However, if a written contract exists between the principal and the third party (such as a financial institution), the third party can refuse to accept a power of attorney if contractual language clearly sets out the right of the third party not to accept a power of attorney or if it establishes different requirements for acceptance of a power of attorney.