How to Get Power of Attorney in Virginia: Step-by-Step Guide

A power of attorney in Virginia authorizes someone to act on your behalf for medical, financial, or education matters.

The grantor is the “principal,” and the authorized person is the “agent” or “attorney-in-fact.”

Requirements vary by state.

Here’s what you need to know about how to get power of attorney in Virginia.

How to Get Power of Attorney in Virginia
How to Get Power of Attorney in Virginia. Source (Reddit)

What are the requirements to get a POA in Virginia?

For a valid power of attorney in Virginia:

  1. The principal must possess mental capacity and willingly agree to the agreement without coercion, as per Virginia law.
  2. Proper signatures and notarization are necessary, with the principal signing the document or being present for the signature. A notary public or someone authorized to take acknowledgments must also be present.
  3. The agent must be a mentally competent adult, trusted to make challenging medical or financial decisions if required.

What are the different types of POA in Virginia?

In Virginia, there are three primary types of POAs:

  1. Financial Power of Attorney: Handles financial matters like bill payments and stock purchases.
  2. Medical Power of Attorney (Advance Medical Directive): Allows someone to make healthcare decisions, including treatment and surgery choices.
  3. Minor Power of Attorney: Permits parents to appoint a trusted individual to care for their child’s education, healthcare, and well-being.

Additionally, medical or financial POAs can be:

  • Durable: Remains valid if the principal becomes incapacitated (default in Virginia).
  • General: Grants the agent broad powers on the principal’s behalf (default is durable).
  • Limited: Permits specific functions for a limited period, e.g., bill payments or childcare.
  • Springing: Takes effect under specific conditions, such as the principal’s incapacitation.

What are the steps for getting a POA in Virginia?

To create a power of attorney in Virginia:

  1. Determine the type and powers you need.
  2. Choose a trusted agent and consider a co-agent or successor.
  3. Draft the document with an attorney, online legal service, or state-provided form. Specify if it’s nondurable.
  4. Sign with a notary public present.
  5. Give a copy to your agent and store the original securely, accessible to loved ones. An electronically transmitted copy holds the same authority.
  6. File a copy with your local land records office if it involves real estate, typically a division of the circuit court clerk’s office in Virginia.

How much does it cost to get a power of attorney in Virginia?

POA document costs vary based on your choice:

  1. Free Online Forms: Download forms free and pay a notary fee, typically up to $5 in Virginia.
  2. Attorney Guidance: Hiring an estate planning attorney may cost $200 to $500.
  3. Online Legal Service: An online service could cost less than $40 for a basic POA document.