How to Obtain a Power of Attorney in Canada

Updated on Wednesday 16th September 2020

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Foreign citizens and investors coming to Canada can complete various actions on their own or they can appoint representatives to handle some of their affairs. In the latter situation, a power of attorney is necessary for representation with various institutions of the state.

The power of attorney is a legal document concluded between two parties (the person or company representative in need of services, called a grantor or principal) and the representative who is usually a lawyer or a close person to the grantor.

Foreign citizens and investors interested in starting a business in Canada and need assistance can grant various types of powers of attorney in Ontario to our specialists who can handle the procedures on their behalf.
 

Types of powers of attorney in Ontario


There are several categories of powers of attorney in Canada:
 
  • the general power of attorney;
  • the specific power of attorney;
  • the enduring power of attorney.

There are several differences between them, however, the preparation and requirements for their validity are the same.

It is quite common for natural persons and company representatives to use powers of attorney in order to complete certain tasks in a faster manner and without having to go through too much trouble for various actions.

If you are interested in company formation in Canada, you can rely on our lawyers for representation through powers of attorney in Ontario.
 

Differences between Canadian powers of attorney


As mentioned above, there are several types of powers of attorney that can be issued in Ontario and in Canada. The most common one is the general power of attorney which is easier to issue because it allows the agent to represent the donor in multiple matters at the same time. It should be noted, however, that all these matters must be written in the document.

There is also the specific power of attorney, which is issued, as its name states, for specific operations (usually one activity that needs to be completed in a specific period of time).

The enduring or lasting power of attorney is a special type of document which enables the representative to act on behalf of the grantor even when he or she becomes mentally incapacitated or after death (where such stipulation is made).

Our lawyers in Canada can offer more information on all types of powers of attorney and the requirements related to each of them.
 

Operations that can be completed based on a power of attorney in Canada


There are various operations and actions that can be complete with the help of the power of attorney. Among these, the most common are:
 
  1. activities related to various civil cases, including litigation (divorce, child custody, alimony and division of assets);
  2. operations related to business matters (the power of attorney can be granted to a lawyer or specialized agent to register a company);
  3. operations related to purchasing or selling real estate in Canada (contract drafting and representation during negotiations);
  4. operations related to signing various contracts when a party needs representation;
  5. general operations such as representation with the tax authorities, obtaining various documents and even when opening bank accounts in Canada.

The issuance of powers of attorney in Ontario or other Canadian provinces are completed the same way and does not take long.
 

Requirements related to the issuance of a power of attorney in Canada


There are serval requisites that need to be fulfilled upon the issuance of a power of attorney in Canada. These are:
 
  • both the grantor and the attorney must be at least 18 years old when the document is issued;
  •  the donor must have full mental capacity in order for the power of attorney to be valid;
  • the document will be issued only based on the identification papers of both parties;
  • the validity of the power of attorney also depends on the grantor signing it.

Depending on the action it will be used for, a power of attorney may or may not need to be authenticated by a public notary. When it does not need to be notarized, at least two witnesses are required to be present upon the issuance of the document.

In the Province of Ontario, most of the services are provided by the local government.
 

Why invest in Canada?


Here are some facts about the Canadian economy and foreign direct investments (FDIs) here:
 
  • between 2018 and 2019, FDIs in Canada increased by 18.6%;
  • Canada has 14 trade agreements with 51 countries which benefit from preferential market access;
  • Canada has one of the most educated workforces in the world with 58% of the citizens aged 25 – 64 having post-secondary studies.

For assistance in issuing powers of attorney in Ontario, please contact us.