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Can a power of attorney change the beneficiary on insurance polices and CDs on a person's behalf?

Rowlett, TX |

I am my mother-in-laws power of attorney. My deceased husband is listed as the beneficiary on her insurance polices and her CD. She has advanced Alzheimer's Disease and can not make a competent decision to change it. She has expressed in the past that she wants all her assets to go to my daughter. She is widowed and only had one child (my husband) who is now deceased. We live in Texas. My daughter is a minor.

Attorney Answers 3


Yes-but it depends on the language in the DPOA and usually never to benefit the person granted the DPOA.

The answer given does not imply that an attorney-client relationship has been established and your best course of action is to have legal representation in this matter.

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The ability to do this will depend on two things: 1. the language in the POA; 2. the willingness of the insurer to accept the POA. The insurer is not required by law to rely upon the POA and it does not want to do anything that could result in it being sued by someone. I suspect they will decline to accept the POA on a change of beneficiary form. An agent under a POA (that is you) must never use the POA to benefit herself.

DISCLAIMER: This is not specific legal advice and does not establish an attorney/client relationship.

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The first issue is what power the agent has under a POA. The second issue is whether you can get an insurance company to accept a new beneficary desigination form. Usually the POA does not authorize the agent to change beneficiary form to benefit agent. If an attorney is involved--assuming agent has power to change beneficary- that may help but does not guarantee insurance company would accept new form. Who is the contigent beneficary under the existing form. You should consult an attorney to discuss case.

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