Coronavirus and powers of attorney
Powers of attorney are a really useful tool to use during the current COVID-19 crisis. Relevant to all corporate clients that need to deliver “wet-ink” signed documents for deals, they allow for a company, LLP or the like to delegate authority to us to sign and deliver documents on their behalf. The effect is such that it is as if that person has signed the document themselves. They can be quick and inexpensive to put in place - we can advise on what they can cover and how to ensure they are validly and effectively created.
Driven by the current crisis we have been getting in touch with clients to see if they would like to consider giving us what is known as an “ordinary” power of attorney. This blog is one way of reaching out. The reasons for this are driven by a rapid change in behaviour stemming from the COVID-19 crisis and are evident: client signatories are now working from home and attending a Post Office is inconvenient; we have noticed our Royal Mail deliveries becoming later by the day; property sale/ purchase/ secured lending transactions cannot settle without wet-ink documents (such as dispositions and deeds of restriction of standard security) and so having scans of those/ electronic signatures just doesn’t wash legally; and having us sign documents on their behalf is one less step in the process and makes a transaction easier to manage in this particularly difficult time.
Powers of attorney can be carefully crafted so as to give a very limited remit to the attorneys. Ordinarily, they can last for either a specific duration or can be revoked upon a written instruction at any time by the granter. They can be tailored for each situation.
In these current times, having a tool like this at your disposal can really make a difference as we need to focus on getting cash in the door/ deals done quickly (whilst managing risk) more than ever.
We can also help prepare powers of attorney for individuals through our Private Client team. Those are different types of power of attorney.
Please do get in touch if we can help at all with this.
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