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When: Aug 13, 12
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A Power of Attorney is a legal device in Ireland which can be set up by a person (known as the Donor) during his or her lifetime when he or she is in good mental health.   It allows another appointed person, the Attorney, to take action on the Donor’s behalf if he or she is absent, abroad or incapacitated through illness.  There are two types of Power of Attorney allowed under Irish Law:-

1. Power of Attorney which gives either a specific or general power and ceases as soon as the Donor becomes incapacitated or after a certain time limit;

2.  An Enduring Power of Attorney which takes effect on the incapacity of the Donor.

A Power of Attorney can be specific, dealing with one task, e.g. the sale of a house.  A Power of Attorney is created by a document signed by the Donor or at the Donor’s direction and in the presence of a witness.

An Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA) allows the Attorney to make personal care decisions on the Donor’s behalf if he or she is no longer fully mentally capable of making decisions him or her self.   Personal care decisions may include deciding where and with whom a Donor will live and who he or she will see or not see and what training or rehabilitation he or she should get.  However, the procedure for creating an Enduring Power of Attorney is much more complex than that for creating a Power of Attorney.  The procedure requires the involvement of a solicitor and a doctor.

The Enduring Power of Attorney can only come into effect when certain procedures have been followed and the Courts have a general supervisory role in the implementation of the power.  The power must be created when the Donor has the mental capacity to do so.  The Enduring Power of Attorney can only come into force when it has been registered and this necessitates an application to the High Court once it is believed that the Donor is becoming mentally incapable.  There are particular safeguards built in to an Enduring Power of Attorney.

We can advise on all aspects of creating general Powers of Attorney and Enduring Powers of Attorney.

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Kieran McCarthy & Co. Solicitors
Floor 3B, 6 Lapps Quay, Cork.
t: 021 427 5220 | f: 021 427 5250

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