Why Should You Create
A Lasting Power Of Attorney?
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document which allows you to appoint people (known as ‘Attorneys’) to make decisions on your behalf should you become unable to do so explains Phil Taylor, partner at Farleys Solicitors
This document should be prepared by a specialist private client solicitor and will allow you to safeguard your affairs in the event that illness, injury, or old age should result in you needing assistance in the managing of your affairs.
This is often not a subject we like to think about but failing to prepare for the worst could result in you or your loved ones being unable to safeguard your interests.
A common misconception is that when someone becomes incapable of managing their own affairs due to illness or incapacity, their spouse or civil partner will automatically have the right to look after their affairs. This is simply not true. Where a person loses their capacity to make their own decisions, assets in their sole name will effectively become frozen until a Deputyship Order is obtained from the Court of Protection authorising a deputy to act in connection with that person’s property and affairs.
It can take many months to obtain a Deputyship Order and this can also be an expensive process, so creating an LPA whilst you can should avoid any unnecessary stress for your loved ones and should make sure that your best interests are protected.
Types of LPA
There are two types of LPA:
1. Property and financial affairs – This enables you to choose a person or people to make decisions about money and property on your behalf, eg collecting state benefits, paying bills or selling your home.
2. Health and welfare – This allows you to choose individuals who will be able to make decisions on your behalf if you are unable to make them for yourself, in respect of matters such as your daily routine, moving into a care home, medical care or whether to give your attorneys authority to give or withhold consent for life-sustaining treatment.
It is also possible in both types of LPA to express your views as to how you might wish your attorneys to deal with matters on your behalf if you wish to do so.
What’s stopping you from creating an LPA? Some people mistakenly view setting up an LPA as relinquishing their powers, but it most certainly isn’t. Others will not like to think of themselves in such a vulnerable position.
However, creating an LPA allows you to choose an individual or individuals who you know and trust, will act in accordance with your wishes if you are unable to make those decisions for yourself.
For advice on setting up a Lasting Power of Attorney call Farleys’ Private Client team on 01254 368040 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Farleys has offices in Preston, Blackburn, Accrington, Burnley and Manchester