Powers of Attorney

18/01/2010

A Power of Attorney is a document that allows you to appoint a person or organization to handle your affairs while you are unavailable or unable to do so. For the purposes of purchasing or selling real estate in Spain, the powers of attorney usually granted are either general powers or special powers. A general power permits the chosen person or organisation (known as the Agent) to act on your behalf in a variety of different situations. A special power authorises your Agent to act on your behalf in specific situations only. Your lawyer will be able to explain the clauses stipulated within the power of attorney document prior to going to the Notary’s office. In this way you will know exactly what kind of powers you are granting to the agent. It is important that you inform your lawyer if you want the power to be limted to a specific period of time. If you do not, the power will remain in force until you return to the Notary’s office to formally cancel it.

In Spain, a power of attorney must be signed before the Notary for it to be legally valid. You will receive a copy of the power once you have signed it before the Notary, but you must remember to collect the original once it is ready. Only this original document is valid. If you are not able to come to Spain to grant a power of attorney before the Notary, then your lawyer can draft the power of attorney in Spanish and English and send this to you. You must then take this document to a local Notary OR the Spanish Consulate where it must be signed by the Notary or Consul and the person/s granting the power. N.B. The Agent/s do not need to be present. If you take the power to a local Notary, the document must then be sent to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to have the Hague Apostille attached. If, however, you use the Spanish Consulate then there is no need for the Hague Apostille to be attached. The power is ready for use once it has been signed by the Cónsul.



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