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May a Power of Attorney be used after Death

Can a person who was given a Power of Attorney write checks to herself from the principal's (issuer's) HELOC account after the principal has died?


The short answer is, "No." A power of attorney always ceases to be effective at the moment of the principal's death. However, in many cases, if the attorney-in-fact and the persons with whom the attorney-in-fact deals are ignorant of the principal's death, an action of the attorney-in-fact on behalf of the principal will be valid. If the drafts upon the home equity line have a negative effect on the equity of the estate (that is, the heirs receive less because of the drafts), you can expect that the legal representative of the estate will attempt to recover the funds from the former attorney-in-fact or others to whom they were transferred.

Published on BankingQuestions.com 1/31/07