Can a person acting as POA remove a beneficiary from policies?

Q: My sister will NOT talk to me and behind my back put my mom in a nursing home. My sister went got POA health and financial from my mom. Now she wants me to pay half of all debts. My mom told me she put me and my sister as beneficiaries on her life insurance policies. Now that my sister is POA can she remove me as beneficiaries from those polices and not tell me? (Jefferson Hills, PA)

A: Under the new enactments to the Power of Attorney statute, effective January 1, 2015, an Agent can only change beneficiaries on a life insurance policy if specifically granted that power in the “Powers” section of the Power of Attorney document. Under the prior Power of Attorney Act, effective in the year 2000, an Agent may be able to do this if there is similar language giving such authority. Your question depends on when the document was signed and how it was drafted. You should get a copy and consult with a lawyer.

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