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General and special powers of attorney

A power of attorney is a unilateral deed by which the principal grants a power of attorney to act in relation to third parties in the name and on behalf of the principal.

A general power of attorney – which may only be granted in the form of a public deed, i.e. drawn up and kept by a notary public – covers all administrative acts of the principal, and may be granted for an indefinite term, until revoked. The special power of attorney, instead, enables the agent to act for a specific matter or transaction and may be granted either by public deed or by private deed with notarised signature (see below).

Main reference legislation: Civil Code, Articles 1387-1400; Law 89/1013, Article 51