Always Have a Back-Up Agent in Your Power of Attorney

I cannot tell you the number of powers of attorney documents that I have examined that only name an agent to administer the estate or person signing the power of attorney. These powers of attorney are silent as to what happens if that appointed agent is unwilling or unable to serve. It is very important that all powers of attorney also name a successor agent.

Many unforeseen things can happen which may render the agent unable to serve. The agent may also become incapacitated. The agent may die. The agent may also wish to resign.

If the agent is unable to serve and no successor agent is named, an interdiction will have to be filed against the principal to appoint a curator. This interdiction process under Louisiana is long and expensive which otherwise could have easily been prevented by naming a successor agent.

If you have any questions regarding powers of attorney, you should consult an experienced estate planning attorney.-Kent S. DeJean