Draft Powers of Attorney Bill 2021

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Have your say on the proposed draft Powers of Attorney Bill 2021.

What's being decided?

The South Australian Law Reform Institute (SALRI) released a report in 2020 entitled ‘Valuable Instrument or the Single Most Abused Legal Document in our Judicial System? A review of the Role and Operation of Enduring Powers of Attorney in South Australia’ (SALRI Report). The SALRI Report made 120 recommendations.

The SALRI Report indicated that the current Powers of Attorney and Agency Act 1984 (POA Act) is incomplete in a number of areas and recommended a number of legislative changes including:

  • the insertion of statutory objectives and principles
  • standard forms
  • procedures for revocation
  • improved witnessing requirements
  • clarity around the eligibility, roles and responsibilities of attorneys
  • clarity around the definition and assessment of legal capacity.

In addition to the recommendations outlined in the SALRI report, the draft Bill also seeks to address:

  • requirements relating to general powers of attorney, in particular making and revoking the powers
  • allowing a person to sign a power of attorney or revocation on behalf of the principal at the direction and in the presence of the principal
  • remuneration of attorneys
  • transitional arrangements.

The draft Powers of Attorney Bill 2021, which seeks to implement a majority of the legislative recommendations of the SALRI Report, has been tabled in Parliament and is now ready for your feedback.

Background

The use of powers of attorney in South Australia is governed by both common law and the POA Act, noting that the Real Property Act 1886 does include requirements for powers of attorney in respect to dealing with land. The POA Act governs both general powers of attorney and enduring powers of attorney.

The area of elder abuse and power of attorney reform has been an active issue of discussion and action at the national level.

The general view in the SALRI Report is that the POA Act is significantly outdated as it has not been the subject of major reform since its commencement.

The draft Powers of Attorney Bill 2021, seeks to repeal the POA Act and create a new Act implementing a majority of the legislative in nature recommendations in the SALRI Report.

The draft Bill does not deal with the recommendations relating to establishing a register of enduring powers of attorney because that reform is being considered nationally as a priority item of the Meeting of Attorneys-General.

For more information read the Power of Attorney Bill 2021 Fact Sheet.

Get involved

Read the:

Have your say by:

What are the next steps?

At the end of the consultation period, we will consider your feedback to inform the draft Powers of Attorney Bill 2021. We will then consider the next steps to progress the Bill.

Have your say on the proposed draft Powers of Attorney Bill 2021.

What's being decided?

The South Australian Law Reform Institute (SALRI) released a report in 2020 entitled ‘Valuable Instrument or the Single Most Abused Legal Document in our Judicial System? A review of the Role and Operation of Enduring Powers of Attorney in South Australia’ (SALRI Report). The SALRI Report made 120 recommendations.

The SALRI Report indicated that the current Powers of Attorney and Agency Act 1984 (POA Act) is incomplete in a number of areas and recommended a number of legislative changes including:

  • the insertion of statutory objectives and principles
  • standard forms
  • procedures for revocation
  • improved witnessing requirements
  • clarity around the eligibility, roles and responsibilities of attorneys
  • clarity around the definition and assessment of legal capacity.

In addition to the recommendations outlined in the SALRI report, the draft Bill also seeks to address:

  • requirements relating to general powers of attorney, in particular making and revoking the powers
  • allowing a person to sign a power of attorney or revocation on behalf of the principal at the direction and in the presence of the principal
  • remuneration of attorneys
  • transitional arrangements.

The draft Powers of Attorney Bill 2021, which seeks to implement a majority of the legislative recommendations of the SALRI Report, has been tabled in Parliament and is now ready for your feedback.

Background

The use of powers of attorney in South Australia is governed by both common law and the POA Act, noting that the Real Property Act 1886 does include requirements for powers of attorney in respect to dealing with land. The POA Act governs both general powers of attorney and enduring powers of attorney.

The area of elder abuse and power of attorney reform has been an active issue of discussion and action at the national level.

The general view in the SALRI Report is that the POA Act is significantly outdated as it has not been the subject of major reform since its commencement.

The draft Powers of Attorney Bill 2021, seeks to repeal the POA Act and create a new Act implementing a majority of the legislative in nature recommendations in the SALRI Report.

The draft Bill does not deal with the recommendations relating to establishing a register of enduring powers of attorney because that reform is being considered nationally as a priority item of the Meeting of Attorneys-General.

For more information read the Power of Attorney Bill 2021 Fact Sheet.

Get involved

Read the:

Have your say by:

What are the next steps?

At the end of the consultation period, we will consider your feedback to inform the draft Powers of Attorney Bill 2021. We will then consider the next steps to progress the Bill.

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Page last updated: 06 December 2021, 09:44