A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document appointed by a single person, known as the Donor, that grants one or more person the status of Attorney. This allows them to make decisions relating to health and welfare or financial matters on the Donor’s behalf should the Donor lose the ability to make decisions for themselves.
Let the expert Solicitors here at Jackson Barrett and Gass answer some of your most frequently asked questions about Lasting Power of Attorney so you can make an educated decision about your needs.
Why Should I Make a Lasting Power of Attorney?
There are a number of different reasons to make a Lasting Power of Attorney, but many people do so to protect themselves in case injury, illness, or impairment.
If you are a business owner, you may wish to create an LPA to ensure your business is managed appropriately and by someone you trust. Property owners may wish to make an LPA to ensure their properties are maintained or sold on depending upon their preferences.
Who Should Make a Lasting Power of Attorney?
Many people believe that you don’t need to make a Lasting Power of Attorney until you are entering old age, but this is false. In reality, something that impacts your decision-making ability could happen at any point in life. Did you know that neither your relatives or your spouse are legally allowed to make decisions concerning your health and welfare or finances without an LPA in place? Because of this, it’s vital to make an LPA in order to protect your own wellbeing in the future.
Who Should I Choose as an Attorney?
When choosing your Attorney or Attorneys, it’s important to choose someone you trust to look after your affairs. Anyone over the age of 18 can be an Attorney. The only stipulation in the case of a Property and Financial Affairs LPA is that he/she/they must not be bankrupt.
People often choose members of their family or close friends to act as their Attorney/s. You may also want to consider business partners or trusted professional advisors. If you appoint more than one Attorney, you can choose how you would like decisions to be made on your behalf. Attorneys can either make decisions “Jointly” where they must make all decisions together or “Jointly and Severally”, in which case they can act together or individually.
What Happens if There is No Lasting Power of Attorney in Place?
If you lose the ability to make your own decisions, and there is no LPA in place, you will need to apply to the Court of Protection which can be a long and drawn out process for your friends and family. Find out more about what happens when you don’t have a Lasting Power of Attorney here.
Considering making an LPA? We’d be happy to provide advice and information towards getting the process started. Contact us today via email or on 01625 523988.