Helping Idaho Public Employees Build A Secure Retirement

Power of Attorney

Overview

Generally, a power of attorney is a document, signed by the principal (the member who grants a power of attorney), authorizing an agent to act on his or her behalf. The agent who is granted a power of attorney is called the "attorney-in-fact." Acts by the attorney-in-fact within the scope of the power of attorney bind the principal. The authority granted by a power of attorney is governed by the terms of the document and operates prospectively only unless otherwise noted. A power of attorney granting broad authority is called a "general power of attorney." A power of attorney granting authority for limited purposes is called a "limited" or "specific power of attorney." A PERSI Durable Power of Attorney is limited to PERSI matters only. PERSI will not accept a power of attorney for major decisions such as selection of a retirement option, beneficiary designation or requesting an account withdrawal for a vested member.

Revoking a Power of Attorney

A power of attorney can generally be revoked orally or in writing, or by seizing and destroying the previously assigned Durable Power of Attorney. A subsequent appointment by a court of a conservator or guardian does not by itself invalidate a power of attorney. However, the court-appointed fiduciary may revoke or amend the power of attorney. A court will generally appoint the principal’s nominee as guardian or conservator if named in the power of attorney, unless that nominee is shown to be disqualified or for good cause.

A power of attorney is not revoked by the death of the principal until the attorney-in-fact has notice of the death. Likewise, in the case of a power of attorney that is not a durable power, the disability or incapacity of the principal does not revoke the power until the attorney-in-fact has notice of the disability or incapacity.

Durable Power of Attorney

"Durable" means that the power of attorney survives notwithstanding the principal's subsequent disability or incapacity. The Durable Power of Attorney must contain language similar to the following:

"This power of attorney shall not be affected by subsequent disability or incapacity." or

"This power of attorney shall become effective upon the disability or incapacity of the principal."

PERSI Form RS113

The PERSI Durable Power of Attorney form gives members the opportunity to assign one or more individuals the right to make decisions regarding their accounts. PERSI holds the form on file, and if someone tries to act on the member's account, PERSI verifies that the person is authorized to act on the member's behalf. All powers of attorney are subject to verification.

Members may change their designee at any time by completing a new form and submitting it to PERSI.

For PERSI purposes, members may provide a copy of a general Durable Power of Attorney, or they may complete the RS113 PERSI Durable Power of Attorney that applies only to PERSI matters. This form limits the attorney-in-fact to certain administrative functions.

Effective Upon Receipt

As soon as PERSI receives a Durable Power of Attorney, the designee is authorized to act on an account. The member need not be incapacitated for the designee to handle the PERSI accounts.

False Claims

It is against the law in the State of Idaho for any individual (including PERSI members, spouses, beneficiaries, or family) to knowingly make a false claim for benefits or money from PERSI.