Be careful when giving power of attorney

On Behalf of | Mar 19, 2020 | Estate Planning And Probate

A power of attorney in Minnesota gives someone nearly the ability to make decisions on behalf of another person. Of course, the bound on this power is that the person cannot commit fraud and steal. However, this is what happened to several retired athletes who trusted the wrong person and lost millions of dollars as a result.

In this case, a woman posed as a financial advisor and offered her services to wealthy athletes for free. However, asking her several key questions would have revealed the fact that she was fraudulent. For example, her scheme would have been uncovered had anyone asked whether she was bonded. The advisor was arrested after her fraud was finally discovered but not before she did tremendous damage to her clients’ finances.

When considering a power of attorney, make sure to thoroughly investigate the person who is being considered for the role of agent. This power should not be given until one is completely comfortable with the person. After the power is given, make sure to keep a close eye on finances on a regular basis. Always be vigilant about asking questions, even if it appears that nothing is wrong. If something does look amiss, do not hesitate to take quick action. Many frauds happen because the victim does not engage in any oversight over their money.

An estate planning and probate attorney may provide advice for those who are looking for the right solution when it comes to managing their money. The attorney will not manage the money themselves but will be able to help with figuring out the right questions to ask in order to vet the proper advisor. They might also help spot signs that something is wrong if there is a power of attorney that is already in place.