Download General Power of Attorney Form
What is general power of attorney?
A general power of attorney form bestows a wide and all-encompassing authority unto an agent to conduct affairs on behalf of a principal. These include signing documents or entering into transactions or agreements on the principal’s behalf.
The principal must be over 18 years old and have the mental capacity to grant general power of attorney in South Africa. The agent must also be over 18 years old and solvent. The general power of attorney only applies to property owned by the principal and financial affairs. It cannot be used to make decisions about the principal’s welfare.
When to use a general power of attorney template
General power of attorney gives someone broad authority to act on your behalf when:
- You are absent; or
- You wish to grant someone broad authorisation to act in specific matters.
Circumstances in which you would need a general power of attorney include:
- To grant someone authority to manage your financial and legal affairs while you are abroad;
- To authorise someone to pay your bills from your bank account regularly;
- To authorise someone to collect your pension; or
- To authorise an estate agent to negotiate on your behalf.
When not to use a general power of attorney template
General power of attorney cannot be granted to an agent to:
- Make a will;
- Initiate divorce proceedings; or
- Make decisions about the principal’s welfare.
General power of attorney format
A general power of attorney letter is similar to a conventional business letter. The format of the general power of attorney letter comprises of a heading, body, signatures and a revocation statement (optional).
You can download a general power of attorney sample below.
When does general power of attorney end?
General power of attorney ends when:
- The specified power of attorney period has ended;
- The principal revokes the power of attorney;
- The principal dies;
- The principal becomes insolvent and his/her estate is sequestrated; or
- The principal becomes mentally incapacitated.