Powers of Attorney
Lasting Powers of Attorney
As we all grow older the time may come when we are no longer in a position to manage our property and financial affairs, requiring the need with the help of someone we trust. By appointing a friend, relative or professional to hold a Power of Attorney, you will allow them to act on your behalf. There are three different types of power of attorney:
- Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)- for matters relating to property and affairs
- Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)- for matters relating to the person’s welfare
- Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA)- concerning only property and affairs (these have now been replaced by the LPA’s but any EPA made before 1st October 2007 remains valid.)
LPA for Health & Welfare
By setting up this type of LPA enables your Attorney or Attorney’s to decide on decisions regarding your health and welfare when you are unable to make these decisions for yourself. This may include decisions on your daily routine, medical care, moving to a care home and even refusing life-sustaining treatment.
LPA for Property & Affairs
This type of LPA allows your appointed person to make decisions about your money and property, for example; collecting your benefits, paying your bills, selling or renting out your home, dealing with your banks or investment companies. You can appoint someone to look after your property and financial affairs at any time – regardless of whether you are able to make your own decisions or not.
It is up to the Donor whom they want to appoint as attorney, how many they want and how they should act. However, if more than one attorney is appointed to deal with the same issue, then they must act jointly unless the power of attorney states they do not need to. The Donor can even appoint replacement attorneys.
LPA’s have to be made in a fixed legal way and are not legally recognised until they are registered with the Office of the Public Guardian. The Donor can register the LPA while they are able to make decisions for themselves. Alternatively, it can be registered by the attorney at any time in the future.
Enduring Power of Attorney
An EPA made under the old law must only be registered if the Donor is losing, or has lost, their mental capacity – it is therefore registered by the attorney.
Once you have prepared a LPA it does not mean your Attorney will immediately take over your financial affairs – you can include restrictions in the document to state that the document cannot be used until and unless the Attorneys obtain medical evidence confirming you have lost mental capacity. If you decide to keep your LPA in our storage facility rest assured we will never release the LPA document to your Attorney without such medical evidence or your express authorisation.
The team of experienced lawyers and Solicitors will handle your situation sensitively and advise you of the best solution for your individual requirements.
For further information please contact a member of the Wills & Probate team.