How do I get Power Of Attorney over a family member who is in jail?

UPDATED: Sep 16, 2014

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How do I get Power Of Attorney over a family member who is in jail?

This family member is my sister, and she has been charged with a felony, and if convicted, may be going to jail/prison for quite a while. My sister’s daughter (my niece) who is age 19 is trying to apply for Medicaid/FAMIS. My niece who is applying for Medicaid/FAMIS is eligible for Medicaid/FAMIS but there is only one problem that is stopping my niece for getting Medicaid/FAMIS, and that is her mom (my sister) has TRICARE on my niece. So how do I, or can I get Power of Attorney over my sister while she is in jail, especially if she is convicted and goes to prison?

Asked on September 16, 2014 under Estate Planning, Virginia


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You cannot get a power of attorney over her without her consent--even prisoners must consent, or agree, to giving someone else power over their affairs; what you can do is draw up a power of attorney (and it can be a limited one--e.g. it could limited to what you need for your neice) and see if she'll sign it. (You can visit relatives in jail, and even give them legal documents to sign: contact the authorities to arrange.)

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