Maryland Durable Financial Power of Attorney Form

The Maryland Durable Financial Power of Attorney Form permits the Principal grant or transfer the power of authority, as defined by the Principal, to a selected Agent. This form will apply to a very broad spectrum of subjects in the Principal’s life which should be taken seriously. By filling out and signing this form the Principal will essentially state that he or she expects relevant agencies/institutions to respect the designated Agent as the Principal. That is, the Agent can potentially have decision making powers over the Principal’s Real Property, Stocks and Bonds, Accounts held with Banks, Insurance Companies, and Financial Institutions, and a host of other matters considered under the control of the Principal.

The Principal is not required to allow all of the powers to be transferred.  It’s strongly advised the Principal read all the information presented on this form prior to its completion and his or her signature. After all, it is imperative to read and comprehend all paperwork before being bound with a signature. If the document is at all unclear, the Principal should consider a consultation with a licensed attorney to ensure that they are receiving proper legal advice. When utilized correctly, this form will allow a Principal the security of knowing that his or her financial obligations may be met by the Agent (during the defined time period of effect), while safeguarding his or her interests in matters that should not concern the Agent.

All signature parties must submit their signature before a Notary Public and two or more adult witnesses (notary may serve as one of the two required attesting witnesses). The document may also be revoked as they wish.

How to Write

1 – Notice/Warning to Principal

  • The Principal must carefully review the beginning statement contained within the document

2 – Designation of Agent

Once all the information has been read, it will be time to document the parties involved, as well as some information regarding each one reported. This may be done by submitting the appropriate information in the areas provided:

  • On the blank line labeled “Name of Principal,” report the full Name of the individual using this paperwork to grant another party (Agent) the defined authority

Next it will be time to declare who the Agent receiving Principal Authority is. This will be done by supplying the appropriate information in the following spaces:

  • The next item needing attention is labeled “Name of Agent.” List the full Name of the person assuming Principal Authority once it is granted in effect in the space provided
  • Below this, on the line labeled “Agent’s Address,” document the complete Address where the Agent resides and will be found
  • On the space designated as “Agent’s Telephone Number,” fill in a well maintained Telephone Number where the Agent will be reached.

In many cases, it is considered a wise precaution to name a Successor Agent. This is the individual who may assume Principal Authority if the Primary Agent (named above) is unable to fulfill his or her obligations to the Principal in any way. If the Principal wishes to name a Successor Agent, then his or her information must be provided below the worlds “Designation of Successor Agent(s) (Optional):”

  • Locate the line labeled “Name of Successor Agent” in this section, then fill in the Successor Agent’s full Name
  • On the line following the term “Successor Agent’s Address,” report the complete Address where the Successor Agent resides

An added precaution is to have a Second Successor Agent declared. This will add the benefit of having a third party who may step into assuming the Principal’s responsibilities (in the Principal’s Name) should the previously listed Agent’s be unable to. This may be done by filling in the appropriate areas with the requested information:

  • On the first blank space, “Name of Second Successor Agent,” report the Name of the Second Successor Agent
  • Next, on the second blank line in this area, report the Second Successor Agent’s Address of residence
  • Finally, on the third blank line in this area, report the Telephone Number of the Successor Agent

3 – Grant of General Authority

The Principal must review statements 1 through 7. The section below the words “Grant of General Authority,” will list the abilities, actions, decisions, and nature of authority the Principal will grant the Agent by virtue of this document. Should the Principal find that they would like to eliminate any of the defined powers , strike through the power and initial that specific power. This section will allow the Agent to

  • Statement 1 – Form Contracts with another person
  • Statement 2 – Use any mode of communication, recording, or execution to perform a transaction
  • Statement 3 – Seek aid from government agencies (including the courts) to carry out an any act authorized by this document
  • Statement 4 – All decisions and actions relating to claim litigation
  • Statement 5 – Obtain, pay, and release an attorney, accountant, expert witnesses, and any other entity considered an advisor
  • Statement 6 – Perform any preparations, executions, filings, recordings, submissions, etc. necessary to “safeguard or promote the principal’s interest”
  • Statement 7 – Perform lawful acts relating to the Principal or Principal’s property

The “Subjects and Authority” section will deal with areas or matters in a Principal’s life the Agent will assume authority over. As the Principal reviews this entire section, the Principal may choose to eliminate any one or more of these powers. Strike through any of the following, should the Principal decide not to grant any of the powers. There will be several areas of authority to determine:

  • Real Property
  • Stocks and Bonds
  • Banks and Other Financial Institutions
  • Insurance and Annuities
  • Claims and Litigation
  • Benefits from Governmental Programs or Civil or Military Service
  • Retirement Plans
  • Taxes

In some cases, there may be some nuances where a specific power must be extended or restricted. If there are any terms, conditions, instructions, or disclosures that must be applied to this document, the must be recorded on this document before signing:

  • Locate the heading “Special Instructions (Optional),” if the Principal would like to provide special instructions, document them using the blank lines provided under this heading.

5 – Effective Date

The document is effective immediately unless otherwise stated by the Principal:

  • If the Principal would like the document to only be in effect for a limited amount of time then locate the heading “Termination Date (Optional),” and enter the last Calendar Date, Month, and Year of the Agent’s Principal Authority using the two blank lines in this section. If the Principal would like this document to go in effect immediately, leave the spaces in this section blank

6 – Nominating A Guardian

If the courts require a Guardian over the Principal and/or the Principal’s Estate to be appointed at some point, the Principal may document his or her choice for this position. This may be done by indicating Principal preference under the heading “Nomination of Guardian (Optional).” There will be enough room to nominate two individual’s for this purpose, each one must be documented separately in the spaces provided:

  • If the Principal wishes the Agent (or Successor Agent) listed above then mark the check box labeled “My agent…”
  • If the Principal wishes to name a specific individual for this purpose then he or she must enter this party’s full Name, complete address, and current Telephone Number on the blank areas labeled “Nominee’s,” “address,” and “Nominee’s telephone number”

7 – Signature and Acknowledgement

Locate the heading “Signature and Acknowledgment,” the following items must be submitted:

  • The Principal’s Signature must be supplied on the line “Your Signature Date”
  • The Principal’s Printed Name must appear on the space labeled “Your Name Printed”
  • The Current Address of the Principal must be provided on the line labeled “Your Address”
  • The Principal’s Phone Number must be entered on the line labeled “Your Telephone Number”

8 – Notary Acknowledgement

Once the Notary Public reviews all of the signatures and records the identities of all signature parties, the Notary shall complete the remainder of the Notary’s required information that will acknowledge the document. Only the Notary Public may notarize this document with a seal.

9 – Witness Signatures

The last area of this document will contain enough room for two Witness Signatures to be presented with some information. Each Witness must physically view the signing and confirm the statement below the notarization section by Signature:

  • The first line “Witness #1 Signature” will requite the Witness’ Signatures
  • The second line “Witness #1 Printed Name” must have the Name of Witness #1 Printed
  • The third line “Witness #1 Addresses” requires the Address of the Witness to be entered