Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)

Many people, as the result of an accident sudden illness or advancing years, lose the ability to manage their own affairs during their lifetime.

Although you may have appointed executors in your Will, they may not be able to act for you while you are alive. It is not correct to assume that your spouse or next of kin will be allowed automatically to take on this responsibility.

The solution here is to make a Lasting Power of Attorney. This is a legal document in which you set down who are to manage your affairs in the event that you are prevented from doing so.

There are 2 different types of LPAs:

  • A Property and Affairs LPA is for decisions about finances, such as selling the donor's house or managing their bank account; and
  • A Personal Welfare LPA is for decisions about both health and personal welfare, such as where to live, day-to-day care or having medical treatment.

You do not need to have both as they are separate documents.

The person or people you can appoint to act as your Attorney are your spouse, your children, or a trusted friend or relation. They will be able to legally act on your behalf to do anything you could do yourself, unless you restrict his or her authority. The appointed person can for the Property and Affairs LPA:

  • Deal with your financial affairs, having access to your bank and building society accounts.
  • Sign documents on your behalf.
  • Dispose of property.
  • Purchase goods and gifts on your behalf.

And for the Personal Welfare LPA:

  • Make decisions about where you live
  • Your day to day care
  • What medical treatment you have

So a Lasting Power of Attorney is a powerful Legal Document which is essential for any adult who has a Bank Account, or who owns Property, or if you wish for someone to look after your personal welfare. The best time to make an LPA is when you make a Will

Please contact us for a free leaflet about making both Lasting Powers of Attorney on 01367 250289

Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) explained

An LPA is a Power of Attorney which subject to conditions and safeguards, continues in force in the event that the maker of the LPA (called the “Donor”) should be unable to manage their own affairs, for the Property and Affairs LPA, either physically or mentally, provided that it is registered at the Office of the Public Guardian.

The LPA for Personal Welfare can only be used, once registered, if the person who has made the LPA, the donor, has become mentally incapable of handling their own affairs.

What is the purpose of an Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)?

To enable people, while they are still mentally capable, to decide who they would like to deal with their affairs for them in the event that they should become mentally incapable. For the Property and Affairs LPA, it can also include being physically unable to manage your own affairs, or if you wish to leave the country for a while.

What authority can the Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) give?

The power may be completely general allowing the Attorney to do almost everything the Donor could do on his or her behalf, or it may be limited to certain specified purposes.

Can a Donor appoint more than one Attorney?

Yes, there is no limit, but for practical reasons one or two is the norm. The Donor may choose to appoint attorneys to either work together or separately, or a combination of the two options for different accounts.

What is an Attorney?

An Attorney is someone who can act on behalf of a Donor in financial affairs and personal welfare. If the Donor gives the Attorney(s) general authority to act on his or her behalf, the Attorney will be able to do most things that the Donor could have done E.G. Sign cheques, withdraw money to pay bills, make gifts etc.

For the welfare LPA, to decide on medical treatment, where the donor is to live and day to day care.

If more than one Attorney, do they have to be appointed jointly?

No. They can be appointed to act on their own or together, or a combination if you wish to specify that for different accounts. If appointed jointly, they must apply jointly or the LPA will not be registered and neither of them will be able to act.

When does the Donor sign the LPA?

Essentially whenever he or she wishes, and is happy with the terms of the LPA. The Donor must be mentally capable of understanding what an LPA is, and what it is intended to do. As there is a waiting time from submitting the documents to the Office of the Public Guardian to the time of registration, it is recommended that LPAs are sent for registration as soon as they are made.

Please contact us for a free leaflet about making both Lasting Powers of Attorney on 01367 250289