Arrange your Lasting Power of Attorney now so you and your family are prepared for whatever the future holds.
Lasting Powers of Attorney; the Basics
Lasting Powers of Attorney grant legal power to someone to act on your behalf. Institutions have become increasingly bound by bureaucratic red tape. This can be incredibly frustrating if you do not have the correct legal documents in place.
Having a Lasting Power of Attorney in place will allow someone else to manage your affairs more easily in the future.
Circumstances when we advise Lasting Powers of Attorneys can be used
If you are unexpectedly poorly or in an accident which leaves you temporarily out of action
Travelling or working abroad
To prepare for old age
Vulnerable adults who need help and support to manage their finances
We make certain that everything is put in place correctly, for your peace of mind in the future.
A Lasting Power of Attorney is a document in which you (as the donor) can appoint people you trust (your attorneys) to deal with your affairs. Your attorneys can deal with your house (e.g. sell or rent it for you), they can manage all of your financial arrangements and even make decisions for you relating to your health and welfare.
We can ensure that your documents are properly certified and registered with the Office of the Public Guardian. (This is the government organisation that processes Lasting Powers of Attorney so that they can be used.) We can prepare and advise you on all aspects of Lasting Powers of Attorney.
There are two types of Lasting Powers of Attorney:
Property and Financial Affairs
Health and Welfare
These are discussed in more detail in the More Help About Powers of Attorney section below.
Veta Law’s View on Lasting
Powers of Attorney
Provided you choose sensible attorneys whom you can trust, a lasting power of attorney is a really useful document to finish and forget.
By that we mean, complete it properly (this is key), store it somewhere safe and then continue with your life as normal. Albeit you can go about your day to day business with the added peace of mind that if you are ever unwell, in an accident or even just temporarily out of action, you have someone sensible legally appointed and ready to step in. That is, you won’t struggle to manage your affairs, when you need help the most.
Why should I do this now?
If you put off preparing your Lasting Power of Attorney until you actually want your attorneys to use it, you could run into problems. For example, if you are unwell, your doctor’s opinion may be required as to whether you are well enough to complete a Lasting Power of Attorney at all, as it is essential that you have a full understanding of your affairs when you complete this document. That’s why it is simpler to complete one whilst you are fit and well.
In addition, the Office of the Public Guardian takes at least 6 weeks to process (register) Lasting Powers of Attorneys (LPAs) before you can use them. So if you need to use one quicker than this, you can’t. That’s why it’s better to have one already in place so your attorneys can step in at a moment’s notice.
Who should I appoint as my attorney?
Attorneys are normally your spouse or partner, your children or a long-standing friend. At Veta Law, if you are struggling to find a suitable attorney, we act as professional attorneys so please feel free to ask us about this particular service.
Above all, your attorneys must be trustworthy and capable of making important decisions in your best interests. If you appoint more than one attorney, you can appoint them to act altogether (to make decisions unanimously) or individually for greater convenience and flexibility.
It is also possible to appoint replacement attorneys in case your attorney dies or cannot act for you.
Can I still use my Enduring Power of Attorney?
In 2007 Lasting Powers of Attorney replaced Enduring Powers of Attorney. Since 2007, no new Enduring Powers of Attorney could be made. If you still hold a correctly completed Enduring Power of Attorney, this should still work for you. However, please be aware that there are significant differences in the scope and powers granted to attorneys under an Enduring Power of Attorney and a Lasting Power of Attorney. We can advise you on these differences and talk you through whether creating a new Lasting Power of Attorney would be more suitable for you.
Will this mean I lose control?
Whilst you have mental capacity, your Lasting Power of Attorney document cannot take away any of your powers.
Essentially, this document is a safeguard for you to finish and forget. In that once it is done, you can carry on as normal, but with the added peace of mind that if you are ever ill, injured or in an accident, you have someone you trust legally appointed and ready to help you.
If for any reason you change your mind, you can cancel your Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) at any time whilst you still have mental capacity. In practice, it is extremely rare that people do this. But if you wish to, you cancel it by posting the following two documents to the Office of the Public Guardian at the address below:
- Your original Lasting Power of Attorney document
- A written statement called a deed of revocation
Office of the Public Guardian
PO Box 16185
The wording of the deed of revocation can be found using this link: https://www.gov.uk/power-of-attorney/end
VETA LAW CASE
Married Couple in Their Early Fifties
We were acting for a married couple in their early fifties, who owned a business, a couple of properties and had various investments. One of their parents had recently died, and the estate had been unnecessarily complicated and time consuming for them to sort out. As a result, they wanted to ensure that all of their affairs were in order, to avoid leaving their own children with a similar headache.
We recommended they complete Wills and Lasting Powers of Attorney. They decided they wanted Wills including trusts, and Lasting Powers of Attorney for financial matters and health and welfare. As attorneys, they appointed each other and their 2 adult children. They spoke to their children to explain that they would act for each other, in the first instance, and that the children would only be required if one of them had died, or they were both out of action. This work was completed within 2 months and the clients told us they felt relieved everything was in order for the future.
More Help About Lasting Powers of Attorney
There are 2 Types of Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA)
Property and Financial Affairs
This type of Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) allows your attorneys to make decisions about your bank and building society accounts, pay your bills, manage your savings and investments, arrange insurance policies, and buy and sell property for you. A Property and Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) can be used immediately once it is registered with the Office of the Public Guardian.
Health and Welfare
This type of Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) allows your attorneys to make decisions about what kind of nursing care or medical treatment you receive and where you should live. A Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) can only be used when you have lost the mental capacity to make these types of decisions for yourself. A Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) can also give your attorneys the right to consent to or refuse life-sustaining treatment on your behalf, if you wish.
VETA LAW CASE
Widow in her Seventies
We were acting for a lady whose husband had sadly died of cancer in his early sixties. She had 2 children who were married and in their thirties, and they both lived over an hour’s drive away. She had been recently diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and wanted to make it as easy as possible for her children to help manage her finances. We helped her to complete a Lasting Power of Attorney for property and financial affairs. Once complete, she notified all her financial institutions (e.g. bank, pension provider, home insurance etc.) and gave them a certified copy of the document for their records. Her children were then able to contact these financial institutions on her behalf by phone or email. Having spoken to her recently, she said that she was pleased her children were helping to keep an eye on everything as she was sometimes forgetful about what she had done.
VETA LAW CASE
Single Man in his Early Thirties
We were instructed by a man in his early thirties who had been in a serious car accident. He owned a house, had some savings, a pension and worked full-time as a teacher. Due to the accident he was off work for 6 months. He had broken both legs and suffered significant bruising and trauma. He still had full mental capacity and wished to complete both types of Lasting Powers of Attorney. As he was single, he appointed his parents and his sister as his attorneys. In the months following the accident, he needed his attorneys to renew his buildings and contents insurance, pay his bills for gas, electricity and water out of his own bank account and change the repayments on his mortgage onto an interest only basis. Our client told us he felt reassured that his parents and sister could sort out his finances, so that he could concentrate on getting better.
Acting As Attorney
Once you begin acting as an attorney, you are required to fulfil various legal duties. These are explained in detail on the government website, which you can access using the link below. We hope you find the answers you need.
However, if you would like to talk through your own personal circumstances, please do not hesitate to get in touch.