An individual with power of attorney (POA) has the legal right to make many important decisions. He or she can pay bills and answer questions regarding serious medical and financial circumstances for another person. Other parties may dispute this power if they feel it is being misused or has been improperly obtained. People who are involved, or may become involved, in disputes over powers of attorney should take the time to learn more about their rights. At the law offices of Sweeney, Reich & Bolz LLP, our attorneys protect the rights of individuals involved in disputes over powers of attorney.
Most contested powers of attorney matters involve financial powers of attorney, which give an individual the fiduciary responsibility to make decisions about finances during the lifetime of the individual granting the power. Whether you have been given financial powers of attorney and want to protect that right or you want to challenge the rights of the current individual with powers of attorney, our lawyers can help you resolve these legal issues efficiently.
We recommend that people who believe that the power of attorney they executed or currently hold may be challenged take these steps:
- Have a lawyer review your power of attorney
- Make certain that all the signatures are valid and witnessed
- Obtain a doctor’s statement attesting to the fact that the individual is of sound mind and capable of executing a power of attorney
A person who believes that someone is holding a power of attorney needs to be removed should consider these grounds for removal:
- Suspicion of fraud
- Beneficiary changes to life insurance policies and bank accounts
- Opening joint bank accounts
- Mismanagement of assets
When powers of attorney are granted for non-financial matters, including medical and other long term care directives, other issues may arise that may lead to removal of the fiduciary, including the failure to permit visitors, abuse and mistreatment, and relocating the individual to a care facility or other home against his or her wishes. People who suspect that a person holding a loved one’s power of attorney may be abusing his or her position should contact one of our attorneys for a consultation to determine whether and how the person can be removed.
Many attorneys seek to settle cases and avoid court. Our attorneys take a different approach. Known as aggressive litigators, the law firm of Sweeney, Reich & Bolz LLP is dedicated to going the extra mile to fight for our clients’ rights and obtain the best possible outcome for them under the law. Our goal has always been clear: to do what is in the best interest of our clients. Based in Queens, we serve clients throughout the New York City area.