Can I Have Power of Attorney for My Parents in Signing for a Mortgage?

By Heather Frances J.D.

A power of attorney can give you authority to conduct real estate transactions, including signing mortgage documents, for your parents. If your parents can’t sign their mortgage paperwork for themselves and your power of attorney contains the correct language, you may use the power of attorney to sign on their behalf. State laws vary on whether the power of attorney document needs to be recorded as part of the public record.


A power of attorney grants the agent -- the person appointed in the document – authority to do certain tasks on behalf of the principal -- the person who grants the powers. A power of attorney can give the agent authority to conduct certain real estate transactions, such as signing mortgage documents or closing on a home. Alternatively, a power of attorney can grant an agent broad, general powers to conduct numerous types of financial transactions as permitted by law, and those general powers may include the authority to buy and sell real estate.

Granting a Power of Attorney

A parent may use a power of attorney to appoint his child -- or anyone else -- as his agent. Typically, each parent must sign a separate power of attorney since a power of attorney signed by only one parent can only grant the child power over the signing parent’s affairs. Each parent must have the mental capacity to sign a power of attorney, so if one of your parents is mentally incapacitated, due to dementia for example, he may not be able to give you a legal power of attorney.

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Agent’s Actions

If your parents give you a power of attorney that grants you the power to sign their mortgage documents, you should be prepared to do everything your parents would do. You may need to negotiate the terms of the mortgage or fulfill any requirements of the closing process, in addition to simply signing the mortgage papers. You must also act in your parents’ best interests, not your own. Your state’s laws may require the power of attorney itself to be recorded in the office of the county recorder where the property is located if the power of attorney gives you authority to sell, mortgage or lease the property.

Acceptance of the Power of Attorney

As your parents’ agent, you may also want to check with the mortgage lending institution to make sure it will accept your power of attorney. Banks set their own policies regarding whether to accept powers of attorney, and some banks require the use of their own forms instead of a power of attorney drafted elsewhere. The lender can also refuse to allow you to sign the mortgage documents if it is not satisfied with your power of attorney document.

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Temporary Medical Power of Attorney for Child


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How to Get Power of Attorney in Alberta

An enduring power of attorney allows you to make financial decisions for another person in Alberta. The donor is the person granting the authority and the recipient is the attorney. Adults and financial institutions can act as an attorney. The attorney can act on behalf of the donor in any financial matter authorized by the donor on the enduring power of attorney. You can get power of attorney for another person by having her complete an enduring power of attorney form that is valid under Alberta law.

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.

Can Banks Do Power of Attorney Forms for You?

A power of attorney is a legal document that gives someone else the authority to act in your place. This is useful if you want a friend to sell your car or an agent your house, but you also can use a power of attorney to name someone to manage your finances if you become incapacitated. Some banks provide power-of-attorney forms, but they cannot "do" them for you; you must fill in and sign the document before it is effective.

Power of Attorney

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