Power of Attorney (Procura) is a legal document allowing the “principal” to bestow certain powers/faculties to the “Attorney/Proxy”, to act on the principal’s behalf. This document states exactly the powers and the limits the principal gives to the attorney; when granted for specific tasks and limited powers for the Attorney this instrument is defined Limited Power of Attorney (Procura Speciale) .
A Limited Power of Attorney must present a specific and rigid legal form, as this represents a mandatory requirement the document has to respect; Failure to respect this requirement might affect the validity of the Power of Attorney, making it unproductive of the desired juridical effects.
Public officers in charge to check the validity of a PoA have to make sure all the substantial and formal requirements are complying with the law.
PoA are generally revocable
By Law: in case of the Principal death or if the Principal is declared legally incapacitated
By the Principal: this can be done at any time by means of the same legal document used to confer it in first place.
PoA for Real Estate transaction in Italy
If the purchaser/seller cannot be in Italy for the execution of a notarial contract, it is possible to appoint a third person as Proxy. To be legal in Italy, a Power of Attorney must be signed. The document can be signed while you are in Italy, or if not possible, in your home country. If abroad, and depending on your home country, the document must be signed in the presence of a public official (typically a Notary) and or authenticated by an Apostille Certificate or Stamp.
The USA, UK and Australia have signed The Hague Convention of 5th October 1961 which abolished the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents. In any case, an Apostille Certificate or Stamp, also known as the Hague Apostille, is required as proof of authenticity.