How to Make a Power of Attorney in Texas?
4 min read

How to Make a Power of Attorney in Texas?

What's a power of attorney in Texas? What's the purpose of a power of attorney? This article discusses the process of a power of attorney and how this document can help protect you and your loved ones! Keep reading to learn more!

Share this article:

Texas law provides several ways you can make a Power of Attorney to give someone else the right to make financial, legal, and medical decisions on your behalf. If you want to make an online Power of Attorney in Texas, read on. 

What is a Power of Attorney in Texas?

A Power of Attorney, known as a POA, is a legal document that designates a person to act on your behalf in financial, legal, or medical matters. The person who is making the Texas POA is known as the "principal," whereas the person who is being given the authority is known as the "agent." Once the POA becomes effective, the agent will be able to act within the scope of the conditions laid out in the POA.

What Types of Powers of Attorney are Available in Texas?

A Medical Power of Attorney is an “Advanced Care Directive” that gives your agent the power to make healthcare decisions for you when you can't make them on your own. Medical POAs typically become effective when they are signed. However, they can only be used in two situations:  (i) when the principal is incompetent; and (ii) the principal's doctor certifies that the person is in fact incompetent. This protects the principal from granting a Medical POA because of undue influence or pressure by the agent.  Texas law allows the principal to object to healthcare decisions even if the POA is active. An agent can't overrule the principal's objections to a decision, even if the principal is incompetent.  

A Texas resident can also make a Statutory or Durable Power of Attorney. This document gives an agent the right to access the principal's bank accounts, manage or sell property, and make other legal and financial decisions. These documents remain in effect until the principal passes away or becomes incompetent. 

Similarly, a General Power of Attorney allows an agent to make legal and financial decisions. The difference is that a General POA expires automatically in the event that a principal becomes incompetent.

What Does a Durable Power of Attorney Do?

A Durable POA is typically used to give someone the right to make financial and investment decisions in the event that the principal can no longer make them for themselves. The Durable POA takes effect when the person becomes incapacitated - or it may end when the person becomes incapacitated. What makes a person incapacitated? According to Section 751.00201 of the Texas Estates Code, a person is only incapacitated if a doctor's examination concludes that the principal can't manage their own affairs anymore. The doctor must provide a written statement to this effect. For more information, see Section 752.051 of the Texas Estates Code. 

Who Can Make a Power of Attorney in Texas?

Any adult aged 18 or over can make a POA in Texas as long as they are of "sound mind." A person is of sound mind when they can understand the nature of the document they are signing and appreciate the consequences of signing the document.

What Makes a POA Legally Valid in Texas?

For a POA to be effective in Texas, it must be signed by a notary public. 

If the POA calls for the agent to be able to make real estate decisions, then it must be filed with the clerk of courts for the county where the property that is the subject of the transaction is located.

Unlike other states, Texas does not require witnesses to make a POA. However, it must be made in writing.

The POA has to state specifically whether the agent's authority continues when the person becomes disabled or incapacitated, or whether it starts when the person becomes disabled or incapacitated.

How to Revoke a Texas Power of Attorney

A person has the right to revoke their Texas Power of Attorney. The best way to do so is to write a revocation letter. In this letter, you state that you want to revoke the POA that you created. You should sign the revocation letter in front of a notary public. You must also deliver a copy of the letter to the agent. It's best to do this via certified mail. 

Since your agent might have already interacted with people and institutions on your behalf, you should also send a copy of the revocation letter to those individuals and organizations. For example, to revoke a POA, inform the agent and any banks and doctors that the agent interacted with.

The final step is to destroy copies of the original POA that you just revoked. 

Can You Make a Power of Attorney Online?

You can use FastWill to make a Power of Attorney in Texas when you create your Last Will and Testament online. Our service relies on state-specific law and AI to create a customized final document for your needs. 

Scroll Down
Share this article:
Let’s begin! First, what’s your name?

Your name that’s stated on your driver’s license, birth certificate, or passport.