Amendments to Power of Attorney Act in effect

On July 5, the amendments to the Power of Attorney Act took effect. According to a press release from the Government of Nova Scotia, amendments now in effect include:

  • a list of the donor’s rights and protections, including additional safeguards such as being able to choose to appoint a monitor to whom the attorney must also report periodically and upon request
  • new requirements for the valid execution of a power of attorney, including that it be in writing, dated and witnessed by two people;
  • modern concepts of capacity, including an outline of the required approach to decision-making

The explanatory notes of Bill No. 131 Powers of Attorney Act (amended) is a resource for lawyers to become oriented with the changes.
The Society advises all lawyers to review the amendments and adapt their procedures accordingly.
Practical suggestions from Legal Services Support:

  • make sure your precedents are updated;
  • set aside old precedents to prevent accidental use;
  • discuss with your colleagues – make sure everyone is aware;
  • discuss with your staff, so they know to always use updated precedents;
  • be careful when relying on a POA dated on or after July 5th 2022.

If you have questions, contact the Society’s Legal Services Support at [email protected].