First and foremost, a Lasting Power of Attorney (also known as an LPA) is a powerful legal document. Lee Young, Head of our Wills & Tax Team, explains “It permits you to appoint someone that you trust to make decisions on your behalf, either when you do not wish to, or when you lack the mental capacity to do so. A Lasting Power of Attorney can help you plan for the future and is a completely safe way of keeping control over decisions made for you.”
Enduring Powers of Attorney were replaced by the Lasting Power of Attorney in 2007, which was extended to cover personal welfare as well as property and financial matters. Existing Enduring Power of Attorney’s signed before October 2007 remain legally valid and in force.
There are two different types of Lasting Power of Attorney:
- Health and welfare Lasting Power of Attorney Property - allows you to appoint one or more people to make decisions on your behalf for things such as medial treatment. This LPA can only be used should you lack the ability to make your own decisions.
- Financial affairs Lasting Power of Attorney – lets the person/people you have chosen as your attorney make decisions about paying bills, your financial affairs or even selling your home. An attorney can be appointed to look after your property and finances at any time. It is also possible to include a stipulation that restricts the attorney from making decisions unless you are unable to do so yourself.
A Lasting Power of Attorney is not valid until it has been registered with the Office of the Public Guardian. For a free initial meeting please call 01202 499255 and Lee Young or a member of the Wills & Tax Team will be happy to discuss any questions you may have.