Who needs an Lasting Power of Attorney and why?


Without a valid Lasting Power of Attorney should a person lose mental capacity due to an accident, or illness such as Alzheimer’s or a Stroke, the Court of Protection via the Office of the Public Guardian will take control to protect them from themselves and the unscrupulous. see video

What is Mental Capacity?

Having mental capacity means a person is able to make their own decisions. If you’re unable to make your own decisions because you suffer from dementia or are unconscious – someone else will need to do so for you.

These could be decisions about your:

finances - paying your mortgage, investing your savings or buying items you need.
health and care - what you should eat, or what type of medical treatment you should have.

Some people may have capacity to make decisions about some things but not others, or their capacity to make decisions may change from day to day or moment to moment.

What is Power of Attorney

A lasting power of attorney (LPA) is a way of giving someone you trust the legal authority to make decisions on your behalf if you lack mental capacity at some time in the future or no longer wish to make decisions for yourself. The decisions made by your power of attorney have generally the same force in law should you have made them.

There are two types of LPA, the legal documents registered with the Court of Protection, which provide legal permission for your chosen attorney(s) to make decisions on your behalf.

  1. Property & Finance for financial decisions
  2. Health & Welfare for health and care decisions

What can the COP Do?

If there comes a time in the future when you don’t have the mental capacity to make decisions, and you haven’t created a valid lasting power of attorney (LPA) it may be necessary for the Court of Protection to become involved.

The Court of Protection can:

  • decide whether someone has the mental capacity to make a decision
  • make an order relating to the personal welfare or property and financial affairs of someone who lacks mental capacity
  • appoint a deputy to make decisions on behalf of someone who lacks mental capacity.

 

Costs without LPA's in place

Someone who wants to make decisions on your behalf can apply to the court to be appointed as deputy.

The legal costs involved in the application start at a maximum of £850 plus VAT then £1500 in the first year followed by £1185 per year where the court appoints a professional, eg. Accountant. The costs can mount up and cause great concern – see video.

Deputyship is a  similar role to that of attorney. The court will consider whether it is  necessary for ongoing decisions to be made on your behalf, and whether that person  is suitable to be appointed to that role.


The old Enduring Power of Attorney document was replaced by the Lasting Power of Attorney Documents, separating out the nature of decision making into 2 clear categories.

Health and welfare lasting power of attorney

A health and welfare lasting power of attorney can be made to give your attorney the right to make personal welfare and medical treatment decisions on your behalf if at some time in the future you are unable to make those decisions yourself. A health and welfare lasting power of attorney can only be used when it has been registered and the donor has lost capacity (the ability to handle their own affairs).

Property and financial affairs lasting power of attorney

A property and financial affairs lasting power of attorney can be made to give your attorney the right to make financial decisions, such as managing your bank account. Once registered, a property and financial affairs lasting power of attorney can be used while the donor still has capacity, unless the lasting power of attorney specifies otherwise.

The Heather Bateman Story

The video shown on BBC’s One Show gives a brief overview of the financial impact and emotional turmoil that was added to Heather Batemans awful situation with her husband being hit by a car. For the full story click here.

Without an LPA you can face great difficulties including losing control of and bank account in the name of the person who has lost capacity, this includes joint bank accounts!

The LPA Preparation Process

A consultation ensuring the right choices of LPA are made and that the person appointing attorneys in of full mental capacity and is not under pressure from another person to create the LPA.

A questionnaire is completed to collect the content and your instructions for your LPA(s). You may choose to create the documents but not register them until needed, or register them immediately ready for use should the need arise. Registration is a separate cost to creation of the documents and is payable to the Court of Protection at £110 per LPA.

The preparation of your LPA(s) which can be prepared within 7 – 14 days. An express service is available should the circumstances dictate. (Registration can take 8 weeks plus in addition the preparation of the LPA’s)
The delivery and guidance with the signing of your LPA(s), there is a strict criteria of signing which must be followed.
You may choose to keep your LPA's at home or in a safe place prior to registration or indeed after registration. Be aware that once registered your attorney can make decisions for you.
We provide legal storage where you have access via an ID card with security code, your unregistered or registered LPA's can be kept securely until required. The annual fee for legal storage is £65 or £5 per month. Lifetime storage is also available at preferential rates

Our philosophy

We create robust legal documents for our clients including wills, lasting powers of attorney, asset trusts and more, working at your convenience to make it easy in this busy world!

Common questions

What does an LPA do?

An LPA allows a person that you know and trust to legally make decisions for you in the event of you losing mental capacity whether by accident or illness.

Can I lose access to our joint account?

As the Heather Bateman case describes, the Court of Protection, which protects the vulnerable, can essentially seize control of bank accounts to protect the vulnerable, any account with their name on including joint accounts.

Is it possible to avoid court costs?

In comparison to the costs involved of becoming a deputy and any accounting/management reporting that need to be produced on a yearly basis, the cost of establishing a lasting power of attorney is a fraction of the cost and should it ever be needed will be worth many times it’s cost in relief.

LASTING POWERS OF ATTORNEY FOR BOTH PROPERTY & FINANCE AND HEALTH & WELFAREmade TROUBLE FREE with one call and a convenient appointment