WHAT IS A POWER OF ATTORNEY?
A Power of Attorney is known as ‘Escritura de Poder,’ or ‘Poder Notarial’ in Spanish.
A Power of Attorney is a legal document or written authorisation that must be signed in front of a Notary by which you empower an experienced and trustworthy person to act on your behalf in legal matters or transactions.
WHY YOU NEED A POWER OF ATTORNEY?
POA allows your attorney or person you want to act on your behalf to:
– Deal with taxes and bank accounts
– Take court actions in Spain.
Reuters Solicitors can assist you in all your legal matters.
WHY IS CONVENIENT TO ARRANGE A POWER OF ATTORNEY?
A Power of Attorney is a practical way of allowing your Spanish lawyer to undertake tasks and sign documents on your behalf so you don’t have the annoyance of having to attend in person to sign or authorise each part of the transaction.
Moreover, a Power of Attorney is convenient when you do not wish or it is impossible to travel to Spain.
We recommend to hire the service of a lawyer to deal with legal matters or transactions in Spain because Spanish Law is different from your home country so legal matters can be a complex and difficult issue to understand. You need a solicitor whose communications can be fluid and clear.
WHERE CAN YOU DO A POWER OF ATTORNEY?
In Spain: If you are able to travel to Spain, you can grant a POA before a Spanish Notary Public. The document will be written in Spanish so if you are not fluent yourself you will need someone to translate it for you.
To grant a POA in Spain it is usually the fastest and cheapest option.
Reuters Solicitors will prepare the draft POA with the Notary and a member of the team will accompany you to the Notary after making an appointment.
In your home country: If you cannot come to Spain, you can make a POA in your own country by visiting a Notary Public.
Reuters Solicitors in Spain will draft the document in a bilingual version so that the notary can identify parties, witness you signing the document and give faith about it.
HOW CAN YOU GRANT A POWER OF ATTORNEY?
In a first legal consultation one of our solicitor will solve all your questions and we will discuss all your requirements. Reuters Solicitors will give you legal assistance in order to draft a Power of Attorney according with the faculties your needs due to your circumstances (We will ask who you need to give Power of Attorney to and what you would like them to be able to do on your behalf).
- If you legalize the POA in Spain, Reuters Solicitors will prepare the draft POA with the Spanish Notary and a member of the team will accompany you to the Notary after making an appointment.
- If you legalize the POA in your home country, the process will be as follows:
Reuters Solicitors drafts the Power of Attorney in double column, English and Spanish, so that you know exactly what powers you are signing over to our lawyer/s. Moreover, this form will save you money as you will not need a ‘Sworn’ translator of the document.
We will provide the draft POA in Word.docx format for ease of signing and dating. We will identify a local notary and arranging an appointment for the signature of the document, if it is necessary for you.
Once you are happy with who you are appointing as your Attorney/s and the powers you are giving them, your signature of the document will need to be witnessed by a Notary Public. The Notary will need to identify you and make sure you understand and you are able to grant the Spanish Power of Attorney.
Once you have signed the document, the witnessing Notary’s signature will be formally needed and recorded. A photocopy of the client´s passport should be also included at the POA which has to be witnessed and signed by the Notary Public.
The process of legalisation involves sending the Spanish Power of Attorney to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London or Milton Keynes with correct pre-payment and a request for an Apostille to be attached to the Notarised document.
An Apostille (‘Hague Apostille’) is a certificate attached to the Power of Attorney that allows the document to be recognised in Spain immediately. It is important to say that the Power of Attorney will not be valid in Spain without the Apostille from the Hague (Convention of 5 October 1961).
It is also possible to grant the Power of Attorney at the Spanish Embassy or Consulates. We do not recommend this option as it takes a long time to obtain an appointment at their offices.
Once the document has been legalised, it can be used for its purpose in Spain. The original POA will be sent to the attorney or person you want to act on your behalf.
Our bi-lingual solicitors can assist with each step of obtaining a Power of Attorney.
WHAT ARE THE ATTORNEY’S OBLIGATIONS?
It is mandatory for the lawyer to strictly follow the client/donor’s instructions and it is forbidden to act beyond the powers given in the Power of Attorney.
The attorney must render accounts to the donor and pay him any amount given to the lawyer by virtue of the power of attorney.
Regarding responsibility, the attorney would be responsible for any damage suffered to the donor as a result of the attorney’s negligence.
WHAT ARE THE DONOR’S OBLIGATIONS?
The donor is responsible for the acts of the attorney done, so the donor must fulfil any obligations to which the attorney has committed on the donor’s behalf.
The donor has the obligation to advance to the attorney any amounts which are necessary for the performance of the mandate.
WHAT HAVE YOU TAKE INTO ACCOUNT WHILE GRANTING A POWER OF ATTORNEY?
We want to highlight that it is essential that the client/donor understandsthe faculties he is empowering someone with. The power you grant has legal consequences and you need to strike a balance to ensure that your Attorney is not given unnecessarily wide Powers but can still deal effectively with your Spanish affairs.
Reuters Solicitors will solve all your questions before granting a Power of Attorney.
There are Powers of Attorney which include substitution clauses by which the attorney can name another attorney to act on client´s behalf.
HOW CAN A POWER OF ATTORNEY BE TERMINATED?
Powers of Attorney do not have an expiry date unless the client includes it. This is for practical reasons because there are cases where legal acts might take longer than expected (mostly cases at Court) and if the Power of Attorney expires before the legal issue is done it would be an inconvenient.
We will like to say that the donor can revoke the Power of Attorney and any time, it is convenient to him. This revocation must be done by granting a Deed of Revocation of Power of Attorney in front of a Notary Public.
The Power of Attorney will be also revoked by:
- The death or loss of the mental capacity of the donor.
- The death or loss of the mental capacity of the attorney.
If you need a Power of Attorney, please do not hesitate to contact us.