Lasting Powers of Attorney

Imagine you’d reached a stage in life where you couldn’t act for yourself and because of data protection, even your partner couldn’t step in to help. Banks and other companies will refuse to speak to your partner if the account is in your name only. When this situation occurs, your financial affairs are taken out of your family’s hands and dealt with by the ‘Court of Protection. This is often a messy, inefficient and expensive process and can often cause complications and even family arguments.

This doesn’t only apply to your finances – a similar process applies to medical decisions too. If you lose your mental capacity, as defined by the Mental Capacity Act 2005, the Court of Protection and the Local Authority can make decisions about your future. They don’t even need to consult with your family!

How can you avoid this happening? The answer is to set up Lasting Powers of Attorney

Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs) are legal documents that allow you to authorise one or more trusted people ‘the Attorney(s)’ with the power to deal with your affairs should you become incapable of doing so yourself. 

Whereas a Will states what is to happen after you die, an LPA gives you protection during your lifetime. We would strongly advise that everyone over the age of 18 has one.

Property and Financial Lasting Powers of Attorney

The primary reason for having Property and Financial LPAs is to enable a trusted friend or family member to deal with your affairs if you lose mental capacity.

By setting up a Property and Financial LPA your Attorney(s) will be able to make the best decisions on your behalf and ensure that your wishes are taken into account.

They can:

  • pay your bills
  • go to the bank on your behalf
  • talk to companies over the phone
  • sell a property on your behalf


For example:

  • If one of you loses capacity, the other cannot sell the joint property to release capital
  • A conflict of interest issue can arise if you are not authorised to act on behalf of your partner
  • Joint bank accounts can be frozen in the event of the mental incapacity of your partner
  • The Court of Protection can take over in some instances which causes added complications
  • A Property and Financial LPA is not just for loss in mental capacity. What is often overlooked is that sometimes an individual’s mind may be absolutely fine, but they still can’t handle their own affairs.

For example:

  • If you are house-bound, it may not be possible to go to the bank
  • If you are hard of hearing, it may not be possible to speak with companies on the phone
  • If you have severe arthritis it may prevent you from being able to sign your name

 

Speak to us today about setting up your Property and Financial LPA for your peace of mind

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Lasting Powers of Attorney for your Business

If you own a business and/or have a number of business partners then you need to set up an LPA to enable your attorney to act on your behalf in a business capacity. A Business LPA will appoint attorneys who will oversee the running of the business and delegate the day-to-day running to other people who will be better placed to carry out those specific functions. Even if you are a sole-trader, appointing a Business LPA is still advised so they can carry out your wishes and prevent financial and legal difficulties.

They can:

  • pay your suppliers or staff
  • go to the bank on your behalf
  • talk to companies over the phone
  • sign documents on your behalf
  • sell or lease business premises on your behalf

Speak to us today about setting up your Business LPA for your peace of mind

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Health and Welfare Lasting Powers of Attorney

The reason why you need a Health and Welfare LPA is that if you lose mental capacity, your family won’t be able to make decisions about your welfare. A person is judged to have lost mental capacity when they can no longer understand the information needed to make a decision, weigh the information up, retain the information for as long as is necessary to make the decision, and communicate it to others.

Unless you have appointed someone to act on your behalf, the Local Authority and Court of Protection can decide on where you live and how you are cared for without consulting your family.

By setting up a Health and Welfare LPA your Attorney(s) will be able to make the best decisions on your behalf.

They can:

  • liaise with social services about where you want to live
  • ensure that your family or friends are involved in decisions
  • do their utmost to ensure that your wishes are taken into account

If you are seriously ill in hospital, your Attorney will be able to do the following:

  • Prevent you being resuscitated against your wishes
  • Make decisions about your continuing health and welfare if your health is likely to deteriorate progressively

Speak to us today about setting up your Health and Welfare LPA for your peace of mind

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“I would like to say how happy I am with the service you provided for me and my wife Tania in helping us sort out both our wills, in just two very short meetings you made it very easy for us to understand all the pitfalls and implications of leaving things untouched with our current will set up. Thank you for explaining things in plain English.”

Leon Coppola - Director at First Image Ltd