WI Assembly Bill 704 | NNA
Law

WI Assembly Bill 704

Notary Law Update: WI Assembly Bill 704

State: Wisconsin

Summary:

Wisconsin enacts the Uniform Power of Attorney Act (UPOAA). If a power of attorney is presented for notarization, a Notary will need to know that a signer may sign the power of attorney or may direct another person to sign it for him or her.  The Act doesn’t require a power of attorney to be notarized, but a court will presume the signature to be genuine if it is acknowledged before a Notary or an officer authorized to take acknowledgments.

Signed:  May 13, 2010

Effective:  September 01, 2010

Chapter: Act No. 319

Affects:

Repeals Sections 243.07 and 243.10; amends Sections 46.90 (1) (eg) 3., 50.06 (5) (b), 54.01 (9), 54.01 (17) (a) 4., 54.01 (17) (b) 4., 54.10 (3) (c) 3., 54.40 (4) (d) 1., 54.46 (3) (a) 4., 54.63 (1) (b) 4., 55.075 (4) (a) 4., 155.70 (4) (a), 180.0722 (2) (a), 221.0519 (2) and 854.08 (5) (a); and creates chapter 244 of the Wisconsin Statutes.

Changes:
  1. Enacts the Uniform Power of Attorney Act as promulgated by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws (2006).
  2. Defines “electronic” and ‘sign” and permits a power of attorney document to be signed using electronic means.
  3. Allows the principal to direct another person to sign the principal’s name on the power of attorney in the principal’s conscious presence.
  4. Defines “acknowledged” to mean verified by the principal before a Notary Public or other individual authorized to take acknowledgements.
  5. Clarifies that the Act applies to all power of attorney documents except (a) a power to the extent it is coupled with an interest in the subject of the power, including a power given to or for the benefit of a creditor in connection with a credit transaction; (b) a power to make health care decisions; (c) a proxy or other delegation to exercise voting rights or management rights with respect to an entity; and  (d) a power created on a form prescribed by a  government or governmental subdivision, agency or instrumentality for a governmental purpose.
  6. Grants a presumption of genuineness to a power of attorney if it is acknowledged before a Notary or other officer authorized to take acknowledgments.
  7. Clarifies that a photocopy or electronically transmitted copy of an original power of attorney has the same effect as the original.
  8. Clarifies that a person may rely upon the presumption of genuineness of a power of attorney if the person in good faith accepts an acknowledged power of attorney without actual knowledge that the signature is not genuine.
  9. Clarifies that a person may rely upon the power of attorney as if the power of attorney were genuine, valid and still in effect, the agent’s authority were genuine, valid and still in effect and the agent had not exceeded and had properly exercised the authority if the person accepts an acknowledged power of attorney without actual knowledge that the power of attorney is void, invalid or terminated, that the purported agent’s authority is void, invalid or terminated or that the agent is exceeding or improperly exercising the agent’s authority.
  10. States the conditions under which a person must accept an acknowledged power of attorney.
  11. Prescribes a statutory power of attorney form.
Analysis:

Wisconsin enacts the Uniform Power of Attorney Act (UPOAA). The UPOAA allows a power of attorney document to be signed and notarized electronically and grants a presumption of genuineness to a power of attorney that is acknowledged before a Notary or other officer authorized to take acknowledgments. This presumption does not apply to a power of attorney that is simply signed by the principal without being acknowledged. The UPOAA allows another person to sign the principal’s name on the power of attorney as long as this is done at the principal’s direction and in the principal’s conscious presence; however, there is no indication whether this person may be the Notary or an individual given powers by the power of attorney document.

Read the bill text.

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