Financial Powers of Attorney

When Can a Financial Institution Reject a Durable Power of Attorney in Texas?

by Rania Combs

Effective September 1, 2017, a person to whom a durable power of attorney is presented must accept a durable power of attorney except unless:

  1. The person is not otherwise required to engage in a transaction with the principal under the same circumstances. For example, when an agent tries to open a bank account and the principal is not a customer, or when the agent seeks a product or service that the person does not offer;
  2. Engaging in a transaction with the agent or principal would be inconsistent with state or federal statutes, rules, or regulations, a request from a law enforcement agency, or a policy adopted in good faith to comply with state or federal statutes, rules, or regulations;
  3. The person would not engage in a similar transaction because the person or an affiliate of the person has filed a suspicious activity report with respect to the principal or agent, believes in good faith that the principal or agent has a prior criminal financial history, or the person has had previous unsatisfactory relationship with the agent involving substantial loss to the person, financial mismanagement by the agent, litigation between the person and the agent alleging substantial  damages, or multiple nuisance lawsuits filed by the agent;
  4. The person has actual knowledge that the agent’s authority or power has been terminated;
  5. The agent has refused to comply with a request for a certification, attorney’s opinion, or translation or if  the certification, opinion or translation is provided, the person in good faith is still unable to determine the validity of the power or authority of the agent;
  6. The person in good faith believes in good faith the power is not valid, that the agent does not have authority to act, or that the performance of the requested act would violate governing business documents of an entity or an agreement affecting the entity;
  7. The person brought, or has actual knowledge another person has brought, an action to construe the power or review the agent’s conduct;
  8. The person commenced, or has actual knowledge another person has commenced, a judicial proceeding to determine if the power is invalid or review the agent’s conduct;
  9. The person has made, or has actual knowledge that another person has made, a report to a law enforcement agency or other state or federal agency stating a good faith belief that the principal may be subject to physical or financial abuse, neglect, exploitation, or abandonment by the agent or a person acting on behalf of the agent;
  10. The person has received conflicting instructions or communications from co-agents; or
  11. The person isn’t required to accept the power by the law governing the meaning and effect of the power, or the powers conferred on the agent by that law don’t include the power the agent is attempting to exercise.

A person who refuses to accept a power must provide the agent with a written statement advising the agent of the reason or reasons why the person is refusing to accept the power of attorney.

About Rania

Rania graduated magna cum laude from South Texas College of Law Houston and is the founder of Rania Combs Law, PLLC. She has been licensed to practice law since 1994 and enjoys helping clients in Texas and North Carolina create estate plans that give them peace of mind.

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