In Alberta, an Attorney has the right, while the Donor is alive, to act on behalf of the Donor with respect to his or her financial affairs. Unless an EPA specifically limits an Attorney’s powers, an Attorney can do anything that the Donor could legally do in regards to the Donor’s financial affairs and sometimes includes the authority to sell the Donor’s house.
An Enduring Power of Attorney does not allow an Attorney to make personal decisions on behalf of a Donor, for that a separate document called a Personal Directive is required.
A Personal Directive is a legal document that allows an individual to appoint one or more people to make personal decisions on his or her behalf in the event of incapacity. This person is called an Agent.
Sometimes family members have concerns about how an Attorney or Agent is assisting an incapacitated individual and may challenge an Attorney or Agent’s decision. Sometimes an Attorney or Agent may be required to defend actions taken under an Enduring Power of Attorney or Personal Directive.
If you are acting as an Attorney or Agent and are unsure of your obligations or an action has been commenced against you and you would like further information, please contact us.
If you are an individual concerned with how the financial affairs and/or personal matters of an incapacitated individual are being handled and you would like further information on your options, please contact us.
Initial consultations are free of charge.
For more information, see the Power of Attorney Act, RSA 2000, c P-20 and the Personal Directives Act, RSA 2000, c P-6, Part 3.