We’ve been writing Wills for over 100 years and have plenty of clients young and old. Unfortunately, some of these people can find themselves with less family or friends nearby than they once had. We offer a full care service if you find yourself in a position where you no longer have the mental capacity to handle your own finances
Granting someone a Lasting Power of Attorney is a big decision, but with reports suggesting 1 million people will suffer from dementia by 2025 it is one that should be made early. Losing our memory or ability to make decisions is hard to think about but should be planned for in case you suffer a serious accident or dementia. If you haven’t designated someone as Attorney, then they will have to apply to be formally appointed through the Court of Protection – a very lengthy and costly process.
When you’re choosing who should receive Power of Attorney, it’s important that you both understand what this actually entails.
What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document that is drawn up to nominate a trusted friend, relative or professional to manage your finances and properties when you are no longer mentally capable to do so yourself.
Once the donor (you) is no longer able to make decisions on their own, the appointed attorneys can act on their behalf to pay any bills and manage investments, among other things.
When can Lasting Powers of Attorney be used?
An LPA usually only comes into play if the persons’ mental capacity renders them incapable of managing on their own. The legal criteria for lacking mental capacity are if a person cannot:
- o Understand information given to them in regards to decision making.
- o Remember information long enough to be able to make a decision.
- o Use or weigh up the information to make a decision.
- o Tell others of their decision.
This decision is made by a ‘certificate provider’ who can either be someone who has known the person for over 2 years, or a person that has specific expertise in this area e.g. a Doctor or a Solicitor. The Power of Attorney can be used if the person falls into a coma, as they can no longer make their own decisions. If the person recovers and can be responsible for their own decisions, then Powers of Attorney are withdrawn.
We understand that an LPA can be tough to deal with, which is why we offer to look after a persons’ financial affairs. We give you peace of mind by ensuring the correct investments are made, the bank accounts are managed and organise the payment of care fees and income tax.