What Is a Durable Power of Attorney?

Kirby Hamilton/E+/Getty Images

A durable power of attorney (POA) is a legal instrument that designates another responsible party to act on the behalf of the person executing the document, if they become incapacitated by illness or age, according to Nolo. Contrary to ordinary POAs, durable POAs remain in effect after a person becomes incapacitated. These can take effect immediately upon being executed, or only go into effect after mental incapacity has occurred. Additionally, once executed, POAs can be revoked at any time, provided the person is still legally competent, explains AgingCare.