Planning For The Future
If you’re worried about losing the ability to manage your finances or who will make decisions about your welfare in later life, you may want to consider making a Lasting Power of Attorney.
A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legal document that allows you to plan what should happen to you and who would be able to make decisions for you, if you become unable to make decisions for yourself in the future.
Our expert team of lawyers has a great deal of experience in Lasting Powers of Attorney and can help you to make a plan that ensures your wishes are adhered to later in life.
Why You Should Consider A Lasting Power Of Attorney
Putting a Lasting Power of Attorney in place offers security for you and your loved ones and lets you decide what should happen if old age, illness or injury leave you unable to deal with your own affairs. You can give instructions on what should happen to your money and your property.
Without a Lasting Power of Attorney, your family and friends may find it difficult to manage your affairs and they may not know your wishes. They may need to apply to the Court of Protection for a deputyship order, which can be costly and time-consuming.
By making a Lasting Power of Attorney you can:
- Choose a person who you trust to look after your affairs and welfare in the future
- Specify your wishes and what powers your attorneys should have
- Choose who is told about your Lasting Power of Attorney, allowing people to raise concerns now should they wish to do so
- Reduce the likelihood of conflicts in the future by ensuring that your signature and the signatures of your attorneys are witnessed
Lasting Power Of Attorney Options
- A Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney allows you to choose one or more people to make decisions in areas such as medical treatment. This power of attorney can only be used when you are unable to make decisions for yourself.
- A Property and Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney enables you to choose one or more people to make property and financial decisions on your behalf. You can specify if it comes into force immediately or once you no longer have mental capacity. You can also specify what powers your attorneys have.
If you give them authority, your Attorneys can make gifts of your money or property but this power is limited. The Court can authorise additional powers to make gifts in certain circumstances. If your attorney is making investment decisions, they should take specialist advice.
If you choose more than one attorney, you can allow them to act alone or require them to act together. If you state that your attorneys must act together then the Lasting Power of Attorney will fail if either attorney dies or loses the ability to manage your affairs. To plan for this you should consider nominating a replacement attorney who could take over.
Making And Using A Lasting Power Of Attorney
If you can still make decisions for yourself, you can make and register a Lasting Power of Attorney at any time. Once you lose the ability to understand what a Lasting Power of Attorney is, it’s too late to make one and your family may need to apply for a deputyship instead.
Our legal experts can help you complete the official forms to make and register a Lasting Power of Attorney. During the registration process, chosen people may object to the Lasting Power of Attorney, but if no objections are made the Lasting Power of Attorney will be registered.
How Can Irwin Mitchell Guide You?
As one of the UK’s most leading law firms, our expert team have a great deal of experience in Lasting Powers of Attorney and will advise you on what action to take to ensure your wishes are followed and your best interests are looked after. We will offer support and clear advice, while helping at each stage of the process.
Further Information Regarding Enduring Powers Of Attorney
Whilst it is no longer possible to make an Enduring Power of Attorney, many created before October 2007 are still valid, and in existence. While these did not need to be registered when created, they will need to be registered if they are to be used once the person who made the Power of Attorney is no longer able to make decisions for themself. Our specialist lawyers can help with this process, and if objections are received or you are a person wishing to make an objection, we can assist in any resulting Court proceedings.
For more information, read our frequently asked questions. To discuss Powers of Attorney with our friendly and professional team call 0370 1500 100 or contact us online and we will get back to you.