The most common time-sensitive documents are:
- Power of Attorney
- Medical Directive
- Quit Claim Deed
- Beneficiary Deed or TOD Deed.
WE CAN DRAFT THESE THE SAME DAY YOU CALL US!!
Often special circumstances require these documents to be executed very quickly. That is why our
office offers same-day delivery of these documents. If you need these documents quickly please call our office and not some paid form service. This is a unique service our law firm offers in recognition of the needs of the marketplace. We can draft these documents and e-mail them to you for notarization without the necessity of even making an office visit. Below is a detailed explanation of each document.
Power of Attorney
A power of attorney(POA) or letter of attorney is a written authorization to represent or act on another’s behalf in private affairs, business, or some other legal matter. The person authorizing the other to act is the principal, grantor, or donor (of the power). The one authorized to act is the agent or, in jurisdictions, the attorney-in-fact. Power of attorneys documents can be general or specific, durable or non-durable.
Health Care Medical Directive
In some jurisdictions, a durable power of attorney can also be a “health care power of attorney.” This particular affidavit gives the attorney-in-fact the authority to make healthcare decisions for the grantor, up to and including terminating care and life support. The grantor can typically modify or restrict the powers of the agent to make end-of-life decisions. In many jurisdictions a health care power of attorney is also referred to as a health care proxy and, as such, the two terms are sometimes used interchangeably.
Relationship with advance health care directive
Related to the health care power of attorney is a separate document known as an advanced health care directive, also called a “living will.” A living will is a written statement of a person’s health care and medical wishes but does not appoint another person to make health care decisions. Depending upon the jurisdiction, a health care power of attorney may or may not appear with an advance health care directive in a single, physical document. In some U.S. states and other jurisdictions, it is possible to grant a springing power of attorney; i.e., a power that takes effect only after the incapacity of the grantor or some other definite future act or circumstance. After such incapacitation, the power is identical to a durable power, but cannot be invoked before the incapacity. This power may be used to allow a spouse or family member to manage the grantor’s affairs in case illness or injury makes the grantor unable to act. If a springing power is used, the grantor should specify exactly how and when the power springs into effect.
A Beneficiary Deed or Transfer on Death Deed allows a person to make a deed while he is alive
conveying his real estate at some future date once a certain condition is met (death.) This is a
unique tool as it allows someone to pass property without going into probate. Unlike a Quit
Claim Deed or other present conveyance, the Beneficiary Deed is a present future conveyance and does not require the grantee’s signature if the person would like to cancel the deed (Perhaps he decides to sell his home instead.) or convey to someone else prior to his death. The person making the Beneficiary Deed can change his mind at any time before he dies. This is a very powerful tool to avoid probate and have the peace of mind of knowing exactly who the property is going to go upon death, but also provides complete control of ownership and over the decision of what with the property all the way until the date of death.
Quit Claim Deed
A Quit Claim Deed is a legal instrument that is used to transfer interest in real property The entity transferring its interest is called the grantor, and when the quitclaim deed is properly completed and executed, it transfers any interest the grantor has in the property to a recipient, called the grantee. The owner/grantor terminates (quits) any right and claim to the property, thereby allowing the right or claim to transfer to the recipient/grantee.
Unlike most other property deeds, a Quit Claim Deed contains no title covenant and thus offers the grantee no warranty as to the status of the property title; the grantee is entitled only to whatever interest the grantor actually possesses at the time the transfer occurs. This means that the grantor does not guarantee that he or she actually owns any interest in the property at the time of the transfer, or if he or she does own an interest, that the title is free and clear. It is, therefore, possible for a grantee to receive no actual interest, and because a quitclaim deed offers no warranty have no legal recourse to recover any losses. Further, if the grantor should acquire the property at a later date, the grantee is not entitled to take possession, because the grantee can only receive the interest the grantor held at the time the transfer occurred. In contrast, other deeds often used for real estate sales (called grant deeds or warranty deeds, depending on the jurisdiction) contain warranties from the grantor to the grantee that the title is clear or that the grantor has not placed any encumbrance against the title.
Because of this lack of warranty, quitclaim deeds are most often used to transfer property between family members, as gifts, placing personal property into a business entity (and vice versa) or in other special or unique circumstances. An example use for a quitclaim deed is in divorce, whereby one spouse terminates any interest in the jointly owned marital home, thereby granting the receiving spouse full rights to the property. For example, when one spouse acquires the marital home in a divorce settlement, the other spouse could execute a quitclaim deed eliminating their interest in the property and transferring the full claim to the other spouse, quickly and inexpensively.