Why make a lasting power of attorney
When life is busy, you may rarely stop to contemplate what could happen if you were rendered incapable.
At worst, this might be physical or mental incapacity. Who could you rely on to make key strategic decisions that could affect the future success and security of your company… your employees… and ultimately your family?
Family members or key employees might provide a short-term solution, but should your incapacity continue for any length of time, you need to protect yourself by ensuring you have a representative in place who has your best interests in mind and has the authority to take action on your behalf.
Giving someone you trust the ability to make important decisions on your behalf is called a lasting power of attorney (LPA). He or she will have the legal authority to handle your affairs, together with guidance and instructions on how they should act.
If you do not have a LPA in place and you become unable to deal with your affairs yourself, then a relative or other appropriate representative would have to make an application to the Court of Protection to be appointed to make decisions on your behalf. This can be a costly and time-consuming process and means that you have no control over who is appointed or what decisions he or she can make.
Types of LPA
There are two different types of LPA.
Property and financial affairs LPA
This allows your attorney to deal with your financial affairs and your property and could include paying bills or selling your property or investments. This type of LPA can also be used while you still have capacity to handle your financial affairs and property if needed.
Health and welfare LPA
Unlike a property and financial affairs LPA, this can only be used once you have lost capacity to make your own decisions. Under this type of LPA, your attorney can make decisions on your behalf about your health and welfare if you are unable to do so yourself. For example, he or she could make decisions about your medical treatment, where you should live and your day-to-day care. Your attorney can even make decisions about life sustaining treatment if you specifically permit this in the LPA.
The team at David Allen can help you complete the necessary paperwork and follow the correct procedures to register your LPA with the Office of the Public Guardian.
For further information please call Trudi Dickinson.