NRIs and Power of Attorney

The life of an NRI makes it difficult for him or her to render their presence in person when it is required for dealing with financial or legal matters in India. A convenient solution can be achieved by appointing a trusted representative to make sure that their affairs in India are handled and managed properly in their absence. This solution is achieved through the concept of a Power of Attorney.

Often, the properties and financial assets owned by an NRI in India require maintenance or other administrative procedures, and it is challenging, both financially and mentally, for those living abroad to make constant travel arrangements for the execution of such procedures. Through a POA, an NRI entrusts an agent in India to complete tasks such as property sales or purchases, managing finances etc. in their absence. To create a POA it is not necessary for the NRI to visit India. A POA can be prepared from abroad.

The POA should clearly state the rights and responsibilities entrusted to the POA holder. The process of obtaining a POA from an NRI is as follows:

  • A detailed description such as the reason for executing, the powers granted, and any restrictions to the agent, along with the time period or validity of the document in a legal or a white paper.
  • The document should be attested by the Indian Embassy/Consulate of the country where they are residing, in the presence of two witnesses.
  • The signed or attested POA has to be sent to India by registered post.
  • The POA must be adjudicated and stamped within 3 months of receipt in India
  • Though it is not mandatory to register the POA document, except in the case of POA with respect to immovable property, in which it has to be registered. To prevent further legal issues, it is always advisable to register the document  

Registration of POA in India

Registering the POA in India is relatively simple when compared with executing the document outside India. The process involves:

  • Draft and print the desired matter on non-judicial stamp paper of required value
  • Valid ID proof of the POA Principal and the witnesses for registration should be kept along
  • Sign and attest the document in front of the sub-registrar in the presence of two witnesses 

Revocation of an NRI Power of Attorney

A POA can be revoked at any time for any reason during the lifetime of the Principal. The revocation made must be in writing and have to be intimated to the POA holder. The revocation also happens in the event of the death of the Principal or if the Principal becomes insane.

The POA holder also has the right to refuse to act on behalf of the Principal and can revoke the POA. 

Disclaimer: The views / the analysis contained therein do not constitute a legal opinion and is not intended to be an advice. Readers of this document are advised to seek their own professional advice before taking any course of action or decision, based on this document.

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