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What is a Wyoming Power of Attorney?

A Wyoming power of attorney is a legal document that serves as the authorization for an individual, known as an agent or the attorney-in-fact, to make financial decisions, healthcare decisions, real estate decisions, or estate decisions on behalf of the person granting this authority. A Wyoming POA is most often used as an estate planning tool, but there are other times when it is also very useful.

Quick Reference:

The person granting permission is referred to as the principal, donor, or grantor.

The person receiving authorization is known as the agent or attorney-in-fact.

WY POA Laws:

A Wyoming power of attorney is a power of attorney form that complies with Title 3 Chapter 5 of Wyoming state law. These laws specifically outline the parameters of a legally enforceable power of attorney and ensure that the form, as well as its duties, are protected under the law. Here are some of the State’s power of attorney requirements:

  • The document must be dated, signed in front of a notary public, and signed by two adult witnesses in addition to the agent and the principal.

The principal has the right to designate which powers the agent does and does not have within the body of the POA. The principal also retains the ability to revoke the document as long as they are considered competent.

A power of attorney is also revoked when:

  • The principal dies.
  • The principal becomes incapacitated and the power of attorney is not durable.
  • The purpose of the POA is fulfilled.
  • The expiration date within the POA has passed.

Why Would You Use a Wyoming Power of Attorney Form?

There are many reasons why someone would use a Wyoming power of attorney form to give someone else the authority to make decisions related to their tangible personal property, financial institution transactions, tax matters, or their well-being. Some of those reasons include:

  • Age, mental health reasons, and illnesses. They could want their affairs handled in specific ways. It is generally advised that everyone, including those who are mentally ill and those in perfect health, establish the right powers of attorney to have their matters appropriately handled and to have their wishes fulfilled.
  • A person with a mental illness may require a different type of power of attorney than a person with a terminal illness.
  • A person with dependent children may have the need for a different power of attorney than someone who does not have minor children.

Each person’s power of attorney needs may vary. Thankfully, there are several types of power of attorney documents. Before you decide to use a power of attorney, you should seek legal advice. Ask about the best POA to suit your needs as well as how to revoke a power of attorney should it become necessary. Here are the most common Wyoming powers of attorney.

General Power of Attorney

A general power of attorney grants an agent the power to make decisions on behalf of the principal.

  • The principal does have the ability to specifically choose what the agent can and cannot do. This power of attorney is terminated if the principal becomes incapacitated, dies, or if the principal revokes it.

Durable Power of Attorney

A durable power of attorney is an "extended version" of a general power of attorney because it goes beyond the parameters of a general power of attorney.

  • The term "durable" comes from the fact that this authorization continues over the grantor’s finances if they were to become disabled or incapacitated. According to Equal Justice Wyoming, all Wyoming durable power of attorneys are considered financial powers of attorney unless otherwise stated. A principal may revoke a durable power of attorney as long as they are not incapacitated.

Limited Power of Attorney

A limited power of attorney is also known as a special power of attorney. It grants limited power to whatever the principal specifies.

  • In many cases, an agent will have the power to handle finances, or make medical decisions, but will not have the authority to do other things such as sell property (depending on what the principal decides). Just like general and limited powers of attorney, the authority terminates if the principal becomes incapacitated, dies, or if the principal revokes or replaces the document.

Medical Power of Attorney

A medical power of attorney grants power to the agent to make important healthcare decisions on the principal’s behalf should they become incapacitated or unable to make such decisions.

  • For instance, if the principal were to suffer from Alzheimer's or dementia and not be in the right frame of mind to give medical consent for certain treatments, a medical power of attorney may be helpful if it is durable. However, a medical power of attorney form cannot be used to make end-of-life decisions. Once the principal is declared incapacitated, a medical power of attorney loses its effectiveness unless it is durable. The Wyoming Medical Center offers information about advance health care directives on their website.

Minor Child Power of Attorney

A minor child power of attorney allows a parent or guardian to grant decision-making rights over their child to a temporary guardian in the event that the parent or guardian may not be present during a medical emergency so that the child may see a healthcare provider.

  • This form is generally used if the parent or guardian must leave the country for a period of time or if the child is temporarily traveling or living with another adult. In Wisconsin, this POA is limited to one year in length.

Real Estate Power of Attorney

A real estate power of attorney grants power to the agent to buy, sell, and manage real estate on the principal's behalf.

  • Because of the potential legal ramifications that could result from using this POA, it is important to first seek legal advice before using this document.

Tax Power of Attorney

A tax power of attorney allows the agent who is usually a qualified individual, such as an accountant, to prepare and submit tax information to the Wyoming Department of Revenue on behalf of the principal.

  • The State of Wyoming uses the standard IRS Form 2848 to establish a tax power of attorney.

Vehicle Power of Attorney

A vehicle power of attorney allows the agent to buy, sell, and handle the necessary paperwork with the Wyoming Department of Transportation on the principal's behalf.

  • Each county in Wyoming has its own power of attorney available on its website.

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