New law in effect for Power of Attorney in Ohio

April 23, 2012

The Uniform Power of Attorney Act (UPOAA) replaced the Ohio law relating to Power of Attorney (POA) on March 22, 2012. The new law has four parts:

  • Part 1: States the rules in regard to creating and using a power of attorney.
  • Part 2: Defines the authority that can be given to an agent in a POA document.
  • Part 3: Provides a sample form people can use who want to create a POA for property.
  • Part 4: Details other laws and powers of attorney that were created before the law changed.

UPOAA provides that a power of attorney created is "durable" unless the document states otherwise. The term "durable" means the POA is effective even if the creator becomes incapacitated. If you don't want your POA to be effective if you become incapacitated, then you must state that clearly in the document. The new law also provides that the POA is effective when executed unless it specifically says that it becomes effective at a future date or when a future event occurs.

If you have a POA created before March 22, 2012, it is valid as long as it met the requirements of Ohio law at the time you created it. Regardless, this new law serves as a reminder to review your documents and make sure your wishes are documented properly.

For more information, see the Pro Seniors Digital Library for references to the new law and what it means.

Note: Information for this article was adapted from an article in the spring edition of "The Alert" newsletter of The Legal Aid Society of Cleveland.