Silver Spring, MD asked in Contracts, Estate Planning and Family Law for Maryland

Q: How do I revoke or modify power of attorney? Must the current agent(s) sign or be notified of the new PoA terms?

I'm 23 years old, and my parents have power of attorney over me - I agreed to it at the time, they presented it in a way that seemed reasonable and I didn't realize THAT'S CRAZY. They have both the medical kind (HIPAA permission?) and durable PoA for non-medical stuff.

I want to revoke their power of attorney, or at least amend it to limit their abilities so they can only step in if I'm *truly* incapacitated. Do the current agents have to sign off on, or be notified of, changes or revokations of an existing PoA agreement? Based on the insane boundary overstepping of the original PoA, I'd prefer not to have them involved in or aware of it being undone/revised.

I guess if they don't know theirs is invalid, they could present it and think it's usable. However, if I'm cognizent enough to be making my own decisions, I would probably be cognizant enough to whip out a revised PoA that says "YOU CAN'T DO THAT." If I'm incapacitated, then they should probably be involved.

1 Lawyer Answer
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Rockville, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: You can revoke at any time in writing. Ideally, you simply create a new POA that revokes all prior POAs. You should send written notice to whomever is named agent under your POA being revoked. That way, if they attempt to act, they are doing so knowing their authority or revoked, which makes them civilly liable and may potentially be prosecuted as a crime.

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