Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA)
Managing your affairs in later life can become more difficult and it is wise to nominate someone you trust to look after your affairs, should the time come when you become mentally or physically incapacitated.
The person who you appoint to look after your affairs and make decisions on your behalf is called an attorney.
The Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) was introduced on 1st October 2007. It is now the primary way to give an attorney the authority to look after a person's financial affairs. The LPA operates both before and after a person becomes incapable of managing their own affairs.
The LPA gives your attorney the measure of power that you define. Your choice of attorney can be altered at any time but comes into play either when you choose or when your mental or physical health declines. A replacement attorney can be appointed to act if an original attorney cannot. You will also be able to place restrictions on what exactly your attorney can deal with, such as property.
When establishing an LPA you must be mentally capable and someone must certify that you understand the nature and scope of an LPA and have not been unduly pressured into the decision.
The new legislation means that the previous type of power of attorney (Enduring Power of Attorney - EPA) can no longer be created. However, existing EPA's granted before 1st October 2007 will continue to be effective. LPA's were created to take the place of EPA's as there were concerns that an EPA could be open to abuse by unscrupulous attorneys. EPA's could be used immediately and only needed registration if the donor lost mental capacity.
Probably the most significant change from an EPA is the requirement that LPA's must be registered with the Court Of Protection before an attorney can act and this may take up to 6 weeks. Another change is the ability for the donor to nominate who they would like to be notified of the registration of the LPA. This is a safeguard against dishonest and exploitative attorneys.
We can prepare your LPA in accordance with your wishes and also register it with the Court of Protection should you wish. Alternatively we can store your LPA until the time comes when you become physically or mentally incapacitated, and apply for registration at that time.
Click here to download our LPA Questionnaire to fill out and bring with you to your appointment.