A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legal document that allows you to appoint one or more people (known as attorneys) to make decisions for you and act on your behalf.  This may be because you are no longer capable of making your own decisions or it could be a temporary situation if, for example, you had to go into hospital.

There are two types of Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs) – a Property and Financial Affairs LPA and a Health and Welfare LPA.

A Property and Financial Affairs LPA will give your attorneys the power to make decisions about money and property for you.  They will be able to manage paying your bills, manage your bank or building society accounts, collect your benefits or pension and manage your investments and property.

A Health and Welfare LPA will give your attorneys the power to make decisions about your health and care.  They will be able to make decisions about your daily routine, such as what food you eat or what clothes you wear, what medical care or treatment you receive and where you live, which could include moving into residential care.

When making such decisions your attorneys must act in your best interests.  It is still important, however, to think carefully about who you want to appoint as your attorneys.  This could be a spouse, a relative, a friend or even a professional advisor.  Certain people may not be able to act as your attorney and attorneys can make decisions in various different ways.  Therefore, it is advisable to seek professional advice on these points.

You do not have to have complex health problems or substantial financial needs to make an LPA.  An LPA will also cover your basic day to day needs and it is a way of you planning your care in case you cannot make decisions for yourself in the future.

Without an LPA, if you lose capacity to make your own decisions, an application will need to be made to the Court of Protection for a deputyship order whereby the court will appoint a deputy to make decisions for you and deal with your finances.  This process is both costly and time consuming and the court may appoint someone as your deputy who you do not wish to deal with your affairs.  By making an LPA you can decide who you wish to appoint as your attorneys and plan for your future care yourself.

Our specialist lawyers at Painters Law can advise you on all aspects of LPAs and help guide you through the procedure to make it a stress-free process.  For more information about Lasting Powers of Attorney and to speak with one of our legal advisors contact our offices Kidderminster 01562 822295 or Stourport 01299 822033 or email probate@painterslaw.co.uk

Written by Charlotte Miltiadou, Trainee Solicitor in the Wills and Probate Department