A power of attorney, also known as a letter of attorney, is a legal document that acts as a lawful authorisation for individuals to make decisions or act on someone’s behalf if they are no longer able to do so. So, to let our readers know more about this very important legal document, in this blog, we are going to discuss different types of power of attorney in Pakistan and legal implications pertaining to them.
Legal Terminologies Related to Power of Attorney
Here are a few very important legal terms related to the power of attorney that you should know
Principal/Donor/Grantor: Someone who grants limited or broad legal authority to another person to make decisions or act on his/her behalf.
Agent/Attorney-in-fact: A person who has the power to act for another person (the principal) according to a particular power of attorney. As stated above, an agent or Attorney-in-fact either possesses limited or broad legal authority to make decisions regarding the principal’s possessions, finances and other legal matters.
Types of Power of Attorney in Pakistan
The two main types of power of attorney in Pakistan are:
- General Power of Attorney
- Special Power of Attorney
Let’s get to know a little bit more about them.
General Power of Attorney
First of all, let’s talk about the general power of attorney. It is a legally drafted document released by the principal in favour of a legal agent or attorney-in-fact. Since it has the word “general” in its name, this document allows the agent to deal with a wide range of affairs on behalf of the principal for a defined period, especially when they are ill or away.
Special Power of Attorney
In contrast to the general power of attorney, a special power of attorney authorise an agent with limited legal authority. It is a specific or limited type of letter of attorney which allows an attorney-in-fact to make decisions on behalf of the principal in a specific situation only.
Here are a few situations in which a special letter of attorney is normally used.
- To authorise a family member to take care of your property when you are away.
- To allow a person to maintain/sell your possessions when you are not around.
- To give legal permission to someone to look after your family in case you are unwell or on a trip.
- To give the authority to someone to sell/purchase real estate on your behalf that makes it one of the most important property documents in Pakistan.
Note: A person can revoke a letter of attorney whenever they want, as long as they are mentally competent. The revocation should be presented in front of a notary public in the form of a written document signed by you. After this, it should be delivered to the authorised agent and third parties (like banks, legal agencies, etc.).
Quick Fact: A notary public is an official appointed by the government to witness the attestation and verification of important legal documents to help deter fraud.
Power of Attorney and Overseas Pakistanis
The majority of Pakistanis who reside abroad either temporarily or permanently, own or possess properties in Pakistan. So, for them travelling back and forth between Pakistan and their country of stay, every time they need to undergo a property transaction is, understandably, near to impossible. In such a case, they go for a legal alternative and authorise one of their family members or friends to take care of property matters on their behalf with the help of a letter of attorney.
Process of Getting Power of Attorney from Overseas Pakistanis
Here’s a step-by-step process to get power of attorney from overseas Pakistani.
- First of all, document a Power of Attorney on a stamp paper
- Send it to the person living abroad (who is going to be the principal).
- The principal then needs to visit the Pakistani Embassy in the country of their stay to receive the document. After this, they need to sign the document and get it stamped from the embassy.
- Get the document attested by a notary public.
- The document is then shipped back to Pakistan.
- Finally, visit the office of Foreign Affairs to get the document verified/attested.
In this regard, you can take a look at one of our previous blogs in which we have discussed the process of how overseas Pakistanis can get power of attorney attested and registered.
Requirements for Power of Attorney
- Original copy of power of attorney document with a few photocopies.
- Application form to attest power of attorney.
- Original Copy of passport of the principal along with its photocopy.
- Original Copy of Computerised National Identity Card (CNIC) / National Identity Card for Overseas Pakistanis (NICOP) and its photocopy.
- Two recent passport size photographs attached to letter of attorney right next to the signature.
- Copies of CNICs of the authorised person and witnesses.
- Processing fee
Registration Fee for Power of Attorney in Pakistan
It will cost you around PKR 10,000 to get your letter of attorney registered from a legal agency. This does not include the official registration fee for power of attorney in Pakistan, which is 1% of the total property or asset value.
Note: A power of attorney in Pakistan needs to be printed on an official stamp paper, the cost of which ranges from PKR 500 to PKR 5,000.
Now that we have given you comprehensive information on the legalities pertaining to the power of attorney in Pakistan, it’s time for us to wrap up this blog. If you have any questions or feedback regarding our blog, send out an email to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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