Can I transfer my POA to someone else?

A fellow caregiver asked...

When a person who was assigned power of attorney no longer wishes to fulfill the duties, can they assign someone else if the principal is incapable of doing so?

Expert Answer

No, the person assigned the power of attorney (who is called "the attorney in fact") cannot legally assign the POA to another person. If the person who authorized the POA (called "the principal") named an alternate attorney in fact in the original POA document, the current attorney in fact can resign, and the alternate can take over. But if the principal didn't name an alternate, and the principal is now incapable of doing so, the current attorney in fact must act under the POA, or no one can. So if the current attorney in fact resigns, there would probably need to be court proceedings to appoint someone with legal authority to act for the principal.