We all worry about what could happen should we become incapable of managing our affairs or making decisions due to old age, illness or injury. The good news is that you can prepare a Lasting Power of Attorney to appoint someone you trust to act on your behalf should it be necessary. Rather like taking out an insurance policy, putting a Lasting Power of Attorney in place is a way of protecting yourself and your family against the unexpected.

If you do not have a Lasting Power of Attorney in place and become unable to manage your own affairs, the alternative can be lengthy and expensive. It could also be stressful for members of your family, especially at a time when they are already anxious about you and your affairs.

There are two types of Lasting Power of Attorney, one deals with financial decisions and the other addresses health and care decisions. To find out more about LPA please see our guide below.

What types of LPA are available?

There are two different types of Lasting Power of Attorney:

Financial Decisions

This deals only with decisions relating to your property and financial affairs and could include operating a bank account, making investment decisions, signing tax returns and buying and selling property.

Health and Care Decisions

This deals with decisions relating to your health and personal matters, and can only be used if and when you lose the ability to make these decisions yourself. This may include decisions about where you should live and who you should live with, arrangements for medical, dental or optical treatment and your day to day care. Most importantly, you can also give your attorneys the right to give or refuse consent to life sustaining treatment on your behalf.

Is it the same as Enduring Power of Attorney?

Lasting Power of Attorney replaced the Enduring Power of Attorney (‘EPA’) Act in 2007. Whilst still valid, registration of Enduring Power of Attorney will be needed if you lose the mental or physical capability to make decisions yourself.

Our specialist team can talk to you about your options and the process of registering your EPA.

Do I need a solicitor?

We understand that using a solicitor can be a daunting prospect so we try to make the process as easy and straightforward as possible. There are several legal services you can arrange yourself without the support of a solicitor and if we feel that this is more appropriate for you, then we will say so. However, we know from experience that some legal matters are best dealt with in partnership with an expert. We have a team of lawyers with a broad range of experience and specialist knowledge who are here to offer advice and support, tailored to your individual needs.

People are usually looking for legal advice at key moments in life such as buying a property, ending a relationship or planning for the future, and that is why it is so important to work with someone you trust to achieve the best possible outcome.

The law and practice referred to in this article or webinar has been paraphrased or summarised. It might not be up-to-date with changes in the law and we do not guarantee the accuracy of any information provided at the time of reading. It should not be construed or relied upon as legal advice in relation to a specific set of circumstances.