Powers of Attorney
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) allows you to appoint an individual or individuals to manage your financial and/or welfare affairs. Lasting Powers can be differentiated from an Ordinary Power of Attorney in that they remain valid if you become unable to handle your own affairs by reason of illness or mental incapacity.
There are a number of considerations when making an LPA and that is why we have devised a simple and concise checklist and instruction form.
The main decisions that you will need to make are:
- Who you wish to appoint as your Attorney and Replacement Attorney.
- If you appoint more than one Attorney, whether you want them to act together, together and independently, or together in respect of some matters and together and independently in respect of others.
- Whether you want your Attorneys to be restricted in respect of making certain decisions on your behalf or whether there are any conditions upon the Power being used in certain circumstances.
Lasting Powers of Attorney cannot be used by your Attorneys until such time as they have been registered with the Office of the Public Guardian, and we therefore recommend that registration takes place immediately on preparation of the Powers. They can then be placed in your file or our strong room to be brought out when needed.
In order to complete a Lasting Power of Attorney a Certificate has to be signed either by somebody who has known you for a certain period of time, or by us, if we feel able to do so. It may be necessary to have the Certificate signed by a medical practitioner, depending on your circumstances. We can provide further advice on this.
Lasting Powers of Attorney are second only to your Will in importance as documents to help handle your affairs in later life or at an earlier time if you become unable to handle your own affairs. We strongly advise that all our clients consider preparing an LPA.