Power of Attorney v Enduring Power of Attorney

Elder law | Print Article

[Autumn 2014]

Often confused as being one and the same, there are some important differences you should be aware of before implementing either a Power of Attorney (‘POA’), or an Enduring Power of Attorney (‘EPA’).


There are two types of EPA.

Personal Care and Welfare: This allows the Donor (the person giving the EPA) to appoint an attorney to deal with any of their healthcare decisions once they lose their mental capacity. Only one person may act as the Donor’s attorney, although a successor attorney can be named.

Property: This relates to the Donor’s property affairs. The Donor can appoint more than one attorney to act jointly (meaning both must work together), or jointly and severally (meaning they can act together or separately). You can decide whether you want your attorney to act immediately, or once mental capacity is lost.

Choose a trustworthy attorney, as there is potential for the role to be misunderstood or abused. You have the ability to limit your attorney’s powers.

POA and Deed of Delegation

This acts in the same way as the EPA for property. However, it stops working once the Donor loses mental capacity (unlike above).

Benefit: Attorney can sign for donor in their capacity as a company director or a trustee (when the Donor is outside of NZ or temporarily incapable of performing their duties).

As you can see, there are many differences between a Power of Attorney and Enduring Power of Attorney. Whether you are an individual, company director or trustee, your needs will vary. Contact your Lawlink lawyer to discuss this further.

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