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Lasting Power of Attorney
A Lasting Power of attorney (LPA) is fundamentally important for all adults. The government recommends that every adult has one, but unfortunately many people leave it too late.
A Lasting Power of Attorney enables people to handle your affairs for you if you become incapacitated due to an illness such as dementia or an injury such as brain damage from an accident.
If you lose the capacity to make decisions for yourself, who will pay the mortgage, school fees and bills? Who will make medical decisions for you including life support? If your affairs are in your name only, no-one has the automatic right to manage your accounts, including a spouse, children and relatives.
If you would like to discuss your requirements further then one of our special advisors can call you back or arrange for a visit
If you have your LPA in place, you have control over who will handle your affairs. Crucially, this appointment can only be made when you are mentally fit and well.
Leaving it too late can mean that trusted relatives and friends are powerless to make decisions for you.
There are two types of LPA: Financial and Health and Welfare
You can appoint the same people for both or different people for each category.
We hear from many people who wish that their parents had taken out a Lasting Power of Attorney before it was too late. Read Sarah’s story about her mother’s early diagnosis of dementia.
TIPS ON LPAs
Don’t delay. Set up an LPA while you are still mentally capable, well before you need it. If you become mentally incapacitated later in life and don’t have an LPA in place, your relatives can face long, stressful delays and court expenses to take control.
Take control. You choose whether the LPA can be used before, or only when, you lose mental capacity. In some cases choosing to hand over control while you still have capacity is a huge support.
Check with family members that they have their LPA in place. These discussions important for everyone in the family.
Choose people that you can trust and discuss the role with them so that they fully understand what will be expected.
There are many resources you can use for advice including the government website, charity websites such as Alzheimers UK and Age UK. You can fill out the form yourself or seek professional services from a Will writing specialist like Fielding Triggs.
Think of the alternative. Without an LPA family and friends may dispute who is best placed to make the big decisions about finances and potentially healthcare and the Court of Protection would need to be involved.
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