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Saturday, September 24, 2016

South Carolina Legislature Enacts New Power of Attorney Act

Known as the “SCUPAA,” South Carolina’s recently-enacted Uniform Power of Attorney Act brings it to a point of cohesiveness with 21 other states, all of which have enacted a nearly-identical act to help streamline the power of attorney creation and execution process. On June 9th, 2016, Governor Hailey signed the act into law following bi-partisan support of the bill in the legislature. The act will provide South Carolinians with a simple, straightforward way to ensure their property and finances are managed properly past the point of mental incapacity – an issue with which many family members have grappled over the years.

The SCUPAA is comprised of three sections, which are modeled after the Uniform Power of Attorney Act created by the National Conference of Commissions on Uniform State Laws. Part One describes the principal/agent relationship that is created by the document. Further, it provides that the power of attorney is to be considered “durable” unless noted otherwise. A “durable” power of attorney is one that remains in existence even if the creator (principal) becomes mentally incapable of making financial and legal decisions in the future.

Part two of the SCUPPA lists certain authorities that must be granted with express language, as these acts pose the greatest risk to the financial well-being of the principal. Express acts included in part two include altering an estate plan, giving gifts or creating a safe deposit box.

Part two goes on to list acts known as “general authority,” which permit the agent to engage in certain tasks on behalf of the agent without express reference in the power of attorney. These general acts include conducting routine financial transactions, buying and selling real estate, filing a tax return, or applying for government business.

The final part of the SCUPPA details certain procedural and jurisdictional matters with regard to any issues arising out of the principal/agent relationship.

Contact an experienced estate planning attorney today!

A power of attorney is an essential document in any well-developed estate plan. To learn more, please contact the Monk Law Firm, PLLC today. You can reach our Fort Mill, South Carolina office by calling 803-594-4453, or our Charlotte, North Carolina office by calling 704-369-9977. 


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| Phone: 803-594-4453
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| Phone: 704-369-9977

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