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The Power of Attorney in Germany

The Power of Attorney in Germany

Updated on Tuesday 18th August 2015

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The-Power-of-Attorney-in-GermanyTypes of powers of attorney in Germany

The German Civil Code provides three types of instruments persons can employ to make legal dispositions regarding the delegation of certain tasks or the capability of making decisions on their behalf. These are:

  • - the power of attorney (vorsorgevollmacht),
  • - the living will,
  • - the nomination of custodian.

Among these, the durable power of attorney in the most employed in Germany. Durable powers of attorney are usually issued for healthcare and for property, but they are also employed by German companies to delegate certain tasks to third parties. German powers of attorney are usually used to avoid the appointment of a custodian by the court. However, there are cases in which a German court may supervise the actions of the executor of the power of attorney.

Drafting a German power of attorney

Durable powers of attorney in Germany are usually granted for longer period of times, some of them maintaining their validity after the donor has passed away. The German power of attorney has broad powers, among these being:

  • - the power to conclude contracts,
  • - the power to waiver a right,
  • - the power to authorize one or more individuals to act on one’s behalf,
  • - the power to supervise others.

Powers of attorney must be given in writing in Germany. Also, certain powers of attorney among which those to sell a German property must be notarized in order to become effective. German powers of attorney may also be revoked at any time considered.

Power of attorney for business purposes in Germany

Even if powers of attorney are mostly employed by natural persons, they are also used by German companies. The agent is the person carrying out the activities or making the decisions on behalf of the person issuing the power of attorney. The most common activities companies may delegate to agents are:

Powers of attorney may be general or specific in Germany. While the general power of attorney allows an agent to engage in more than one activity, the specific power of attorney is restricted to certain transactions.

For drafting powers of attorney or legal representation you can contact our lawyers in Germany.




  • Michelle 2016-11-21

    Can I draft the power of attorney myself and ask a witness to sign on it?

  • Maria Corredir De 2016-12-06

    My aunt lives in Geseinheim, she is 90 years old and a friend ask her to sign a Power of Attorney. She is kind of forgetful so we are worry about vwhat this guy will do with that document.she owns an apartnent and has sone important savings and jewelry. She was reluctant to be visited by us. I live in Las Vegas Nevada and my other sister lives in Colombia I would like to know how legal for that guy is to make her sign that document. Thanks, María Corredor de

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