Selecting an agent for your Texas power of attorney

A power of attorney empowers a designated individual, called your agent in Texas, to act on your behalf in financial and/or medical matters, subject to conditions of your choosing. Choosing the right person for this critical role is essential.

Texas law allows you to appoint any competent adult (at least 18 years old with sound mind) as your agent in a power of attorney scenario. They can be a family member (spouse, adult child, or sibling) or a close friend with proven loyalty and responsibility. Some designate a professional, such as a trust company or fiduciary, to act as their representative in certain capacities.

What qualities should you look for?

Of course, you want someone who is detail-oriented and good with finances (and math). But there are other critical factors to consider:

  • Trustworthy: Ensure you select a person with a demonstrable track record of honesty and integrity.
  • Understanding: It is a good idea to choose someone who understands your financial situation, values and wishes.
  • Good communicator: Effective communication is crucial to ensure your agent understands and respects your decisions and is able to communicate with your heirs.
  • Able and willing: The person you choose should be accessible, reasonably healthy and willing to fulfill their duties.

Ultimately, you should feel entirely comfortable with your chosen representative. You can also appoint a successor agent to ensure continuity if your primary choice cannot serve or becomes unavailable.

An estate planning representative familiar with Texas power of attorney rules can guide you in creating yours. They can help to ensure that your entire estate plan reflects your wishes and safeguards your interests.