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I have power of attorney for my mentally disabled brother can he purchase a car without my consent?

Chicago, IL |

My brother does not have the mental capacity to negotiate deals and he traded in a like new car for the same new car . Since I have PA can he legally purchase a car without my approval ?

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Attorney answers 4


Yes, he can. If a judge has not decided that your brother is disabled, then he still (legally) retains the capacity to contract. You may wish to speak with an attorney regarding right under a power of attorney and a potential need for a guardianship. If he lacks capacity, then your power of attorney may have been improperly granted, as well.

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You askwed basically the same question twice. Your POA may or may not be in place due to lack of mental capacity and your brother may still be able to enter into such an agreement. However, the dealer does not know that. Tell the dealer that your brother does not have the capacity to enter into a financial agreement so it would be in their best interests to take the car back.

Then consider filing a petition for guardianship if your brother is truly mentally disabled.


I think that you are asking if your brother's capacity is a basis to terminate the car purchase contract. Lack of capacity is a basis to void an agree, although the car would have to be returned to the seller. As the other poster said, diminished capacity has to be determined by the court. If your brother gave you PA and is still mentally competent, then he is bound to the agreement. You should consult with an estate attorney.

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Yes, he is free to do those transactions. Only if a physician determines he is incapable of making proper decisions like those, would he lose the legal ability to do so. A typical power of attorney that you describe simply makes you his representative, or agent, in various situations.

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This answer posted on Avvo is for informational and educational purposes only. There is no attorney-client relationship created or formed and you should not rely on this as legal advice. The suggestion is made that if you wish to protect your rights, you consult with an attorney immediately.