Protect Your Children and Assets in the Face of Deportation

Many immigrants are justifiably concerned about protecting any assets they may have in this country, and even more worried about the future of their minor children here. Fortunately, there are some options you can take to provide for the well-being of your children and the security of your property, such as establishing a Power of Attorney.

Establishing a Power of Attorney can prove critical as you navigate the legal system following an arrest, or deportation proceeding. In each of these circumstances, you may be unavailable to manage your estate or legal affairs, and must appoint a third party representative to make those decisions on your behalf.

It is a misconception that if someone becomes incapacitated to handle their estate and legal matters, either due to illness or arrest, that their children or spouse can step in and make decisions. In order to authorize someone, you, the principal, must establish an attorney-in-fact, or agent, to operate on your behalf. This is established by preparing a power of attorney form.

In New Jersey, there are three forms of Power of Attorney:

· General power of attorney broadly authorizes the appointed agent to make medical, legal, and financial decisions on behalf of the principle.

· Limited power of attorney grants the agent power to make specific monetary related decisions on behalf of the principal.

· Durable power of attorney is a specific agreement that remains in effect and valid if the principal becomes incapacitated and unable to make decisions for themselves. Power of attorney documents that do not specify that the power is durable, will become void if the principal becomes incapacitated.

In the Power of Attorney, you can indicate the specific powers that you will grant to your agent, and which actions they will be able to take on your behalf. These decisions and actions can cover a wide range, from real estate and financial transactions, managing a business, handling tax matters, and more. You have the opportunity to establish special provisions for your agent, such as the ability to delegate their duties to another party, or any form of compensation to be given the agent for executing their power of attorney appointed duties. You should establish a secondary agent who would take over as the acting agent should your primary agent under the agreement, become incapacitated to act on your behalf.

Furthermore, you can complete a Power of Attorney that authorizes someone to care for your child temporarily in your absence and to make decisions on your behalf. You can authorize the agent to obtain a passport, purchase travel tickets to reunite the family, and even obtain the child’s medical records. Be aware, however that establishing a Power of Attorney is just one step that families should be taking to get prepared. For example, school districts often have their own unique form establishing who can pick a child up from school if the parent is absent.

When designating a Power of Attorney, it is wise to retain an attorney who can help guide you through the process. The attorney will ensure that the form you are submitting will be valid, advise you regarding whom to select as an agent on your behalf, and review the language and wording of your power of attorney form.

Should you, or anyone that you know, need assistance in establishing power of attorney, specifically following an arrest or deportation proceeding, please contact our offices at (609) 241-7111.

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Csépes Law Offices

Csépes Law Offices Provides Individualized Legal Solutions To Those Needing Family Law, Immigration, Or Real Estate Counsel.

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