Can a Debt Collector Come After the Power of Attorney After a Death?

By Teo Spengler

A creditor, who has lost patience with a debtor, may bring in a debt collector to assist him in collecting the money due. Debt collectors have a legal right to contact a debtor or an agent for the debtor acting under a financial power of attorney. Once the debtor dies, however, both these options are foreclosed.

A creditor, who has lost patience with a debtor, may bring in a debt collector to assist him in collecting the money due. Debt collectors have a legal right to contact a debtor or an agent for the debtor acting under a financial power of attorney. Once the debtor dies, however, both these options are foreclosed.

Financial Power of Attorney

A power of attorney is a legal document under which a person termed a principal gives someone authority to make financial or medical decisions in his place. The authority of the agent is described in the document. It can be limited, like the authority to sell the principal's car, or general, giving the agent the power to take any action the principal could take himself.

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Durable Power of Attorney

Generally, powers of attorney expire if the principal becomes incapacitated. However, a durable power of attorney gives the agent authority to act even after the principal becomes incapacitated. All powers of attorney, however, expire at the death of the principal.

Creditor's Remedies

If a debtor dies, a creditor cannot sue the debtor's agent under a power of attorney, since the document expired at the principal's death. Instead, he may present a claim against the debtor's estate in probate court.

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What Do You Call the Absolute Power of Attorney?

References

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Kansas Statute on Power of Attorney

There are many tasks that you must do personally because of their legal or medical significance. For example, no one else can register your vehicle for you or sign your name to legal documents without formal permission from you. This formal permission is documented by a power of attorney, authorized by Article 6 of Chapter 58 of the Kansas statutes.

Can a Judge Take Away Someone's Durable Power of Attorney?

An agent under a durable power of attorney has legal authority over someone else's finances or medical care decisions. But he is also a fiduciary, held to the highest duty of care known to the law. If the agent violates that duty of care by failing to act in the best interests of the principal, a court can take away his authority and hold him accountable.

Can I Refinance With Power of Attorney?

When you are named as a financial agent under a general power of attorney, you have the right to undertake any action the principal could undertake herself. This includes applying for bank loans on her behalf or refinancing the loans she already holds.

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