A Power of Attorney is a legal document that grants someone the ability to act on your behalf for legal and financial matters subject to limitations either imposed by law or the Power of Attorney itself.
If you’re looking to have someone act on your behalf in a scenario where you are required for deployment, become unwell or are planning an extended trip, the below information will help step you through what’s involved in setting up a Power of Attorney at Defence Bank.
Before executing a Power of Attorney, you should obtain your own independent legal advice.
Three ways a person can act on behalf of another.
- Power of Attorney - A Power of Attorney (POA) authorises a person (the Attorney) to make financial and legal decisions on behalf of another person (the Donor) and automatically ends when the Donor loses capacity to make decisions on their own.
- Enduring Power of Attorney - An Enduring Power of Attorney (EPOA) is the same as a POA with the exception that the authority for the attorney to act on behalf of the Donor continues even if the Donor loses capacity to make decision on their own.
- Financial management order (or an administration order) - A Financial Management Order (FMO) is an order made by a Court or a tribunal to appoint someone if a person loses the ability to make financial decisions.
Eligibility for an Attorney.
Eligibility to be an Attorney varies between each State and Territory, but the general rule is that anyone can act as an Attorney on behalf of another if they are 18 or over, not bankrupt, and have ‘normal’ mental capacity.
When does it end?
A General POA can end in (but not limited to) any of the following circumstances:
- it’s cancelled by the Donor (they must be mentally competent to do so);
- the Donor dies or becomes what’s deemed to be mentally incompetent;
- the Donor becomes bankrupt (dependent on state rules);
- the Attorney dies or becomes what’s deemed to be mentally incompetent;
- the Attorney resigns as Attorney;
- the Attorney becomes bankrupt (dependent on state rules); or,
- where an expiry date is nominated, and that date has passed.
An EPOA can end in (but not limited to) any of the following circumstances:
- it is cancelled by the Donor (they must be mentally competent to do so);
- the Donor dies;
- the Donor becomes bankrupt (dependent on state rules);
- the Attorney becomes bankrupt (dependent on state rules);
- the Attorney dies or becomes what’s deemed to be mentally incompetent; or,
- the EPOA is cancelled by the Supreme Court.
If you are unclear whether a POA or EPOA is still valid, seek independent legal advice.
How can I establish a POA/EPOA agreement at Defence Bank?
Contact your State or Territory Public Trustee's office, Public Advocate or legal representative about drafting and appointing a POA/EPOA in your state/ territory.
Once you have established an agreement you need to advise Defence Bank by:
- completing an Add a Power of Attorney form (F126); and,
- supplying an original paper copy of the POA/EPOA document and ID for all Attorneys.
A POA/EPOA agreement can be limited to specific purposes or for a specific task. However, in instances Defence Bank is unable to accept agreements structured in this way.
Defence Bank will review the supplied agreement to ensure that financial matters are listed within the document and that there are no specific requirements outlined that are unable to be met.
The acceptance of the POA/EPOA is at the discretion of the bank.
How can I revoke a POA/EPOA agreement at Defence Bank?
Contact your State or Territory Public Trustee's office, Public Advocate or legal representative about revoking a power of attorney in your state/territory.
Once you obtain legal advice to remove a POA/EPOA agreement, and you have done so, you need to advise Defence Bank by:
- completing a Revoke a Power of Attorney form (F127).
Frequently asked questions.
What is a Donor?
The person who appoints Attorneys under a POA/EPOA agreement.
What is an Attorney?
A person (who is over 18 years old) appointed by the Donor to act on behalf of the Donor.
What does a POA/EPOA authorise?
When accepted by Defence Bank it provides an Attorney with the ability to manage the Donor’s membership information and financial matters. This means that subject to any limitations imposed by law or the POA/EPOA itself the Attorney can instruct Defence Bank to take any action that the Donor would be able to undertake.
Can I email the documents?
Who can provide the legal document to Defence Bank?
A POA/EPOA can be presented to Defence Bank by the below:
- The donor themselves.
- The appointed Attorney(s).
Can I access the accounts via Online Banking?
As the authorised person that is acting on behalf of a member with respect to banking transactions, you’ll have the ability to manage the person’s account/s online via your own authority profile.
If the POA/EPOA appoints 2 or more Attorneys and is specified as “jointly”, then access to the accounts via Defence Bank’s Business Banking e two to sign process will be established.
Does my POA/EPOA need to be registered?
A POA/EPOA will only need to be registered with your relevant State or Territory land titles office (if applicable at all, depending on the rules of the State or Territory) if it is needed to deal with property (real estate). Personal loans or other loans either secured by property other than real property, or unsecured loans will not require the POA/EPOA to be registered.
What is the difference between a signatory authority and a POA/EPOA?
A signatory authority confers a contractual right between you and Defence Bank for your signatory to provide certain instructions on your accounts subject to the signatory appointment form.
A POA/EPOA confers the right for the Attorney to act on your behalf in relation to matters beyond just those relevant to Defence Bank but subject to limitations imposed by law or the POA/EPOA itself.
As decisions taken by an Attorney acting under a valid authority are binding on you should consider carefully what authority is appropriate for you and obtain independent legal advice before executing any such document.