Can irrevocable POA be revoked after all?

1 answer | Last updated: Sep 14, 2017
A fellow caregiver asked...

If my brother was made my dad's irrevocable power of attorney, is there any way to get this changed? My brother has left the country and as far as I know not planning to return.

Expert Answers

Steve Weisman hosts the nationally syndicated radio show A Touch of Grey, heard on more than 50 stations, including WABC in New York City and KRLA in Los Angeles. He is a practicing lawyer specializing in estate planning and is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court. He's a public speaker and commentator who has appeared on many radio and television shows throughout the country, and he's the legal editor of Talkers magazine, the preeminent trade publication of talk radio. His latest book is The Truth About Avoiding Scams.

A Durable Power of Attorney is always revocable by the person appointing someone to act on his or her behalf. The only problem is that in order for a person to revoke his or her Durable Power of Attorney, he or she has to be of sound mind. If your father is now mentally incapacitated, he would not be able to revoke the Durable Power of Attorney. However, if your father is still of sound mind he can choose to either revoke the earlier Durable Power of Attorney and make a new one naming someone else to be able to act on his behalf. He also can have more than one Durable Power of Attorney so that even if he does not revoke the earlier Durable Power of Attorney, he can grant the same powers to someone else through the creation of a new Durable Power of Attorney. If your father is not capable of making a new Durable Power of Attorney at this time, you can get the authority to act on his behalf through a guardianship petition in court.