Can A Power of Attorney Stop Visitors? (How To Avoid Lawsuits)

Can A Power Of Attorney Stop Visitors

Can a power of attorney stop visitors?

In this article, you’ll learn about:

  • types and examples of POAs that can deny visitors
  • how a POA can enforce stopping visitors
  • if the POA can get in trouble for stopping visitors
  • when it’s NOT recommended to stop visitors
  • how to set up a POA that allows you to stop visitors

Let’s dig in.

Table of Contents

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Definition Of Power Of Attorney

A power of attorney is a legal document.

It allows someone to make decisions on behalf of another person.

The person granting the power is the principal.

The person receiving the power is the attorney-in-fact.

The power can be very broad and cover many aspects of the principal’s life.

Or it can get limited to a single transaction.

The POA grants the attorney-in-fact the authority to act on behalf of the principal.

This includes:

  • making financial decisions
  • signing contracts and documents
  • handling legal matters

In some cases, a power of attorney is necessary for someone to act on behalf of the principal.

Especially those who are:

  • incapacitated
  • unable to make decisions for themselves

Can A Power of Attorney Stop Visitors?

Yes, a power of attorney can deny visitors.

A power of attorney gives an individual the authority to act on behalf of another.

They can make decisions and take action on behalf of the principal.

The POA holder is able to deny visitors from seeing the principal.

The power of attorney has written authorization to restrict:

  • visitors from coming to the home
  • certain visitors from entering the home
  • visitors from interfering with medical treatment
  • visitors from visitation at the hospital or nursing home
  • family members from making end-of-life care decisions
  • visitors from making legal or financial decisions for the principal
  • visitors from accessing financial accounts

Additionally, a POA holder may be able to intervene if a visitor:

  • is behaving inappropriately
  • causing a disturbance

So, yes, a power of attorney can deny visitors.

The POA needs to make sure this decision is in the best interest of the principal.

Types Of Power Of Attorneys That Can Deny Visitors

Any power of attorney can choose to deny visitors.

Especially if they deem it to be in the best interest of the incapacitated person.

It doesn’t matter if the power of attorney is:

  • general power of attorney
  • durable power of attorney
  • medical power of attorney
  • financial power of attorney
  • healthcare power of attorney
  • springing power of attorney
  • tax power of attorney
  • real estate power of attorney

They all are able to deny visitors if it’s in the best interest of the principal.

The power of attorney is responsible for:

  • telling someone if they are on the predetermined list of visitors
  • ensuring the principal’s wishes are respected
  • making decisions that are in the best interest of the principal

Examples Of A Power Of Attorney That Can Stop Visitors

A power of attorney comes in many forms.

People give power of attorney to multiple persons in their lives.

For various different reasons and situations.

Some examples of the power of attorneys that can stop visitors are:

  • court-appointed guardian or conservator
  • a family member designated as a healthcare proxy
  • a trusted friend or relative
  • a professional fiduciary
  • a trusted medical professional
  • an adult-protective services worker

Examples of What Restrictions Can Be Imposed

So, what restrictions can a power of attorney impose on visitors?

A power of attorney can:

  • specify that only family members are permitted to visit
  • limit the number of visitors per day
  • require visitors to sign in and out
  • prohibit visitors from bringing alcohol or illegal substances into the home
  • require visitors to be accompanied by a designated companion
  • prohibit visitors from staying overnight
  • prohibit visitors from bringing pets
  • prohibit visitors from bringing food or beverages into the home
  • require visitors to wear masks and follow social distancing protocols
  • require visitors to be screened for symptoms of COVID-19

How Can A Power Of Attorney Enforce Stopping Visitors?

How can a power of attorney can deny visitors?

The attorney-in-fact can take steps that range from:

  • change locks or issue directives to visitors not to come to the property
  • contact law enforcement to enforce the POA’s directives
  • obtain a restraining order
  • post signs warning visitors that they are not allowed on the property
  • install security cameras to monitor the property
  • hire security guards to patrol the property and enforce the POA’s directives

The POA should get reviewed before any action gets taken.

This will make sure the attorney-in-fact has the authority to deny visitors.

What Struggles Would A Power Of Attorney Have Stopping Visitors?

It’s easy to just say that a power of attorney has the right to deny visitors.

But, what struggles could a power of attorney have enforcing this?

Some struggles they could encounter are:

  • legal challenges from family members who believe that they have a right to visit
  • possible guilt or conflict from having to deny access to family members or friends
  • difficulty enforcing the restrictions if visitors are not willing to cooperate
  • feeling overwhelmed and stressed by having to manage the situation
  • difficulty keeping up with changes in health and safety regulations
  • conflict with other family members or caregivers who may disagree with the restrictions
  • feeling like the power of attorney is being taken advantage of by visitors

Can A Power Of Attorney Get In Trouble For Stopping Visitors?

No, a power of attorney cannot get in trouble for stopping visitors.

But, the power of attorney should always act in the best interest of the principal.

Denying visitors should get done with the principal’s best interests in mind.

Let’s say a POA denying access to visitors is not in the best interest of the principal.

They may be subject to legal action against them.

Some reasons they could get held liable for legal actions would be:

  • negligence: failing to provide the principal with necessary resources (i.e., health care)
  • breach of contract: violation of the rights of the principal
  • violation of rights: denying visitation without the principal’s permission

What Legal Actions Can Get Taken Against A Power Of Attorney For Stopping Visitors?

You have to tread lightly when you’re a power of attorney denying visitors.

People can take legal action against you for denying them visitation.

Here is a list of ways you could wind up in a lawsuit:

  • breach of fiduciary duty: failing to act in the best interest of the principal
  • conversion: refusing to allow visitors to enter the premises without proper justification
  • negligent misrepresentation: making false statements to visitors about the principal
  • fraud: deceiving visitors about the principal’s ability to receive visitors
  • breach of contract: violating the terms of a contract with visitors
  • unjust enrichment: getting paid by visitors who got denied access to the principal.
  • intentional infliction of emotional distress: making threats toward visitors
  • defamation: making false and damaging statements to visitors about the principal
  • infliction of emotional distress: not taking care to prevent visitors from getting upset
  • invasion of privacy: using video or audio recordings to keep track of visitors.

When It's Not Recommended For A POA To Stop Visitors

Sometimes a POA is managing the affairs of a principal whose health is deteriorating.

In this case, it is not recommended for the POA to stop visitors altogether.

This is because the principal may need the medical attention of:

  • family (i.e., parents, children, adult siblings, an adult child, etc.)
  • friends
  • medical professionals (i.e., a physician or nurses)
  • lawyers

The principal may enjoy the physical and emotional support of their loved ones.

And they will need help with healthcare decisions for their well-being.

The health care POA should also get ahold of:

This will help medical professionals take care of their patients better.

It is important for the POA to consider all potential visitors.

And ensure that they are not stopping visits unnecessarily.

A POA should also communicate any restrictions to visitors clearly and regularly.

This will ensure that the principal is receiving the best care possible.

Let’s say that the principal dies because the power of attorney stopped visitors.

They could get faced with lawsuits from the families.

How To Set Up A Power Of Attorney To Deny Visitors

If you want a reliable, attorney-created power of attorney, fill out the form below.

Our experienced attorneys will create your power of attorney, which means:

  • you can make sure your POA abides by the laws
  • you have confidence you have the correct power of attorney set up
  • you don’t have to hire a notary to show up to the signing
  • you don’t have to find witnesses to show up at the signing
  • you get FREE revisions for 30 days

Fill out the form below and we will reach out and get the ball rolling.

Talk soon.

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