my mother has had a minor stroke which has affected her speech center. She can neither speak coherently nor write. There is an existing notarized power of attorney form with me as attorney-in-fact. how do i activate it so that I can pay her bills via her checking account?
1 Answer from Attorneys
Assuming that your mother lives in North Carolina and that the power of attorney is here, you need to register it at the recorder of deeds. You also need to read the power of attorney. If properly drafted, you should not have to file it with the clerk of court, but if it does not contain language about this, then you must also file a copy with the clerk of court to use it. If you file with the clerk of court, you may added requirements to file an annual accounting.
Even if you don't, its a good idea to start a ledger or journal for your mother's property. In there, you will record what assets your mother has (whether it is land, rental income or other income from a pension or Social Security). You will also record every expenditure you make on behalf of your mother. You especially want to keep good records if there is ever any question by a sibling or relative or anyone else.
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