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It is likely that people who have immovable property in India feel the need to give the power of attorney to someone in India to take care of all the affairs related to the property. Businessmen and industrialists living in the U.S. often have to make decisions that affect operations in India. To solve the problems faced in day-to-day operations, people often delegate their functions to a third party (a family member, business partner, employee, etc). The third party performs functions on their behalf. A power of attorney is a legal document that explains this arrangement between the two parties and gives legal permission for the delegated person to handle the matters.
Related Article: More on Power of Attorney
As the person who is empowering another to act on your behalf, you are the principal and the other person to whom you delegate the matters is the agent in this situation. You should only give a power of attorney when there is an absolute need to do so. The agent will act for you and his actions will have legally binding implications for you.
There are two types of power of attorney:
Yes, you can revoke a power of attorney in the following cases:
A power of attorney can be created for empowering the agent for:
Obtaining a power of attorney requires two processes for property and financial matters.
You have to get the power of attorney apostilled for commercial and company related matters. An apostilled copy is a certificate from the State officials verifying that the notarized copy of the power of attorney is valid. Usually, this is done by the Authentication Division in the State Department. This is necessary only for commercial and business related matters. After the documents have been apostilled, there is no need to get it attested from the Indian Consulate.
STEP 1: Write the power of attorney on plain paper. There is no need to create it on stamp paper from India, subject to conditions. Once you have written the power of attorney, be sure to complete the following.
STEP 2: Necessary Only for Commercial And Company Matters.
Send a request for an apostille to the Secretary of State. The Department of State, Authentications Office is responsible for signing and issuing certificates under the Seal of the U.S. Department of State (22 CFR, Part 131. The goal is to provide authentication services to U.S. citizens and foreign nationals (e.g. Indians) on documents such as a power of attorney that will be used overseas.
STEP 3: For All Matters Related to Property and Finances.
Send the document to the Indian Consulate. If you are submitting the documents in person, you can sign it in the presence of the officer at the Consulate. You should carry your passport as well.
The attestation service at any Indian Consulate is provided for Indian citizens only. See Statement 1 for the list of documents required as proff for attestation of POA.
There is one exception. Documents submitted by applicants of other nationalities will be attested only if there is an ‘India’ connection. This means that the applicant wants to give this document for a transaction in India or it originates from India.
STEP 4: Pay the fee at the Consulate. The fee of attestation is as follows:
STEP 5: Once your power of attorney is attested by the Indian Consulate/Embassy, you can send it to India.
The attested power of attorney that is sent to India should be ‘Registered’ in India. Once registered, the process is complete and legal and it is ready to be used.
A power of attorney must be wisely created and given to a trustworthy person. The agent must also be very cautious before accepting a power of attorney. A poorly drafted power of attorney may become a bone of contention between the affected parties.
STATEMENT 1 – DOCUMENTARY PROOF REQUIRED FOR ATTESTATION OF POWER OF ATTORNEY
NOTE: It is advised to carry the original version of the documents with you for verification in case the Consulate asks you to provide it.
Sudhir Pai, CPA, FCA, EA, CGMA
Sudhir is a CPA specializing in Accounting, Financial advisory, Tax & Business Consulting Services with broad experience in all aspects of accounting, administration, tax compliance, audit, and financial management. With over 20 years of experience, he is a Chartered Accountant from India and a Certified Public Accountant in the USA. He also leads a firm of CPAs that proactively understand, identifies and find a suitable solution for the clients.
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