Power of Attorney
What is Power of Attorney?
A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legal document which gives someone (the attorney) authority to make certain decisions on someone else’s behalf. Lasting Powers of Attorney have replaced Enduring Powers of Attorney since 2007 and are a more versatile document.
There are two types of Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs)
Property & Affairs – allows the attorney to deal with your property and finance as you specify, even before capacity is lost;
Health and Personal Welfare – allows the attorney to make decisions on your health and welfare only when you lack the mental capacity to do so yourself.
When choosing an attorney, it is vital that you chose a trustworthy person with the necessary skills to make the most appropriate and beneficial decisions on your behalf. You can appoint more than one attorney and instruct them to either work together or independently depending on specified circumstances.
When can your attorney act?
Your attorney can only act when the document has been signed by both of you and independently witnessed by a ‘certificate provider’ that you understand the nature and scope of the document and haven’t been unduly coerced into signing. It must also be registered with the Office of Public Guardian.
Why make a Lasting Power of Attorney?
It is prudent to create a Lasting Power of Attorney, as you never know when they may be needed. They are not restricted to the elderly and infirm as no one has a crystal ball as to what lies in the future, or when the Lasting Power of Attorney may be needed. Without a Lasting Power of Attorney it may be necessary to apply to the Court of Protection to appoint a deputy if you lose capacity for any reason, suffering an accident, illness, stroke or any number of unforeseen events that may mean you lose the capacity to make decisions for yourself. The appointment of a deputy is a long and expensive process, which can lead to disputes between family members and the deputy appointed may not reflect your wishes or desires.
How We Can Help
As an impartial and sympathetic third party, Curtis Parkinson can draw up the document and advise you on the best courses of action if you are considering this option. Please Contact us now at our Nottingham office for a free initial conversation.
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