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Get a West Virginia power of attorney in minutes

Choose someone to act in financial matters on your behalf by executing a power of attorney (POA). FindLaw’s guided process means you can complete your own POA quickly and easily.

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West Virginia power of attorney options to fit your needs

Power of Attorney

For one person

A do-it-yourself power of attorney form that’s easy to personalize

$49
What’s included:
What’s included
Step-by-step guided process
A power of attorney that’s tailored to your needs
Attorney-approved document compliant with your state’s laws
Free changes and revisions to your will for up to one full year after purchase

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Estate Planning Package

For One person

All the forms you need to create a personal estate plan

$189
What’s included:
What’s included
Last will and testament
Health care directive
Power of attorney
Free HIPAA release form
A comprehensive plan — for less
Free changes and revisions for up to one year after purchase

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Do I really need a power of attorney?

Unlike a last will and testament, a power of attorney is effective while you are alive. Once you execute a power of attorney, you can rest assured that someone you trust is legally able to handle financial affairs if you face incapacitation or are unavailable.

Without a power of attorney, your loved ones must file an action in court to appoint a conservator to act on your behalf and manage your financial decisions and affairs. There is no guarantee that this individual will be someone you trust with essential matters, so it is best to be sure by executing a power of attorney.

Written by:

Jocelyn Mackie, J.D.

Contributing Author

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Reviewed by:

Bridget Molitor, J.D.

Managing Editor

How it works

The process takes less than an hour, and you can complete it from the comfort of your home

Create an account

Create a secure account which is accessible through an easy dashboard you can access any time

Gather information

Indicate who your agent will be and what authority you want them to have

Complete your document

Answer all questions, then we’ll generate your digital documents for downloading, printing, and signing

Make it legal

Carefully follow the instructions provided in the form, which may include signing your documents in front of witnesses or a notary

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Plan for your future with confidence

This free guide will help you:

  • Learn the most common estate planning terms

  • Understand the essential estate planning tools

  • Gather critical information with an estate planning checklist

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How to get a West Virginia power of attorney

Understand how a POA works in West Virginia

A durable power of attorney is a legal document that grants authority to another person to handle your financial, real estate, family maintenance, business, and other day-to-day affairs. The person appointed to this position is called the agent or attorney-in-fact. You, as the one executing the power of attorney, are the principal.

West Virginia recognizes two types of powers of attorney: the durable power of attorney discussed under the Uniform Power of Attorney Act and medical powers of attorney addressed in the West Virginia Health Care Decisions Act. Durable powers of attorney remain effective despite your disability or incapacity and are often a good back-up if that occurs to you. Powers of attorney are durable unless stated otherwise in the document. (See WV Code section 39B-1-105).

Durable powers of attorney can be as broad or limited as you wish. For example, you may appoint one agent (a business partner) to handle your small business while a different individual (your spouse or live-in partner) handles bank accounts, mortgages, and childcare. You may also draft powers of attorney for specific events. For example, if you are abroad and need someone to buy a company car, a power of attorney may limit authority to that specific transaction.

Choose your agent

Your agent should be knowledgeable about your daily affairs and transactions. People often choose a spouse, close friend, live-in partner, family member, or business partner to act in this capacity. Consider selecting a successor agent, too, if your primary choice cannot perform the duties assigned to them due to their own unavailability.

Choose the scope of the power of attorney

Decide which specific powers to assign to your agent. Your form may generally summarize them or provide a list to initial or cross out. Article 2 of the Uniform Power of Attorney Act defines these duties in more detail so you can make an informed choice about your agent’s authority. Most people choose to assign broad powers to their agent unless they are drafting a power of attorney for a specific transaction.

Execute the power of attorney

In order for your power of attorney to become effective, you must sign it in front of a notary public. You can find notaries at your local financial institutions (you may need to be a customer of the bank) or hire a mobile notary. Some print and mail businesses also keep notary publics on staff to serve the public for a fee.

Have your agent sign the certification

The agent certification is not required for an enforceable power of attorney, but it removes all doubt on whether your agent is available and able to act. It also adds credibility to your power of attorney if anyone believes you were not of sound mind or coerced into executing it. Provide this certification to your agent to sign in front of a notary. Ask them to return the original to you once they finish this step.

Make copies

Once finalized, place the power of attorney in a safe place, like a safe deposit box or a fireproof locking file cabinet in your home office. Provide copies to your agent, loved ones, and anyone else affected by the power of attorney.

If you wish to revoke your power of attorney, you can do so by executing a new one, signing a document titled ‘Revocation of Power of Attorney”, or destroying it.

You may want to speak with a lawyer if:

  • You don’t know who to choose as your agent
  • You want to use a POA for Medicaid planning
  • You want to discuss which powers you should give your agent
  • You want legal review of your completed power of attorney
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Commonly asked questions about West Virginia powers of attorney

A power of attorney is helpful to anyone as it provides a back-up if anything happens to you. However, there are also circumstances where a power of attorney becomes essential. These include:

  • Recent chronic or terminal illness diagnosis
  • Frequent long-term international travel
  • High-risk occupations that involve hazardous work conditions or exposure to toxic or harmful chemicals
  • Situations that require help managing real estate or business interests

If you face any of these possibilities, a power of attorney can ensure your business affairs and financial transactions continue if you become unable to manage them yourself. The agent you appoint in a power of attorney can pay bills, keep your business running (so it generates income), and manage family maintenance expenses. Hence, everything moves forward even when you are unavailable.

You can find free power of attorney forms online. However, they often do not come with instructions, and they require additional formatting. You also have no idea if they are appropriate for your situation or enforceable in West Virginia.

Power of attorney forms are self-explanatory and easy to complete if your situation is standard, e.g., you are a wage earner in a long-term stable relationship with average obligations. However, if you face substantial family conflict, own a business, frequently travel for business, or face hazards in your employment environment, consider hiring an attorney. Have them at least review your power of attorney before you sign it.

If you hire an attorney, not only do you receive estate planning advice and the reassurance that your documents are enforceable; you also have access to notary publics and other staff members who make it easier to execute a power of attorney.

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