Lasting Power of Attorney
Our guide to Lasting Power of Attorney forms is coming soon.
How Does It Work?
In your personal life there will come a time when you need to ensure your legal documents are in order. This means you will require a will and a living will, i.e. a lasting power of attorney. The lasting power of attorney document is used when you might in the future need someone to act on your behalf. This person will make decisions based on your health and financial requirements. The grantee of the lasting power of attorney may be a family member, attorney, or other person you trust.
Lasting powers of attorney come in two forms, and it is generally advisable to have both:
- A property and financial affairs LPA – this covers financial decisions about your affairs; and
- A health and welfare LPA – this covers your health and your care.
When the lasting power of attorney document is signed, it then needs to be registered with the government department right away: the Office of the Public Guardian or OPG. There is a fee to pay for this – currently £82 per LPA. You can find the registration details here: https://www.gov.uk/power-of-attorney/register.
Our site offers a number of DIY documents for your use. For the Lasting Power of Attorney, you are primarily using the government’s form for this and so we do not offer a template for the form. You would simply use the government’s form, which is available free of charge here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/make-a-lasting-power-of-attorney (but you have a fee to pay the government department once you have signed it when it then comes to registering it immediately after signing).
However, what we intend to offer in the future is a written guide to make your filling in the government form for an LPA easier to do on your own. If you get the form wrong and it is rejected by the government department, then you lose the fee you have paid for registering it (there is no refund) and have to start over. You would have to pay the fee again once you have corrected any errors. Our guide is intended to assist you in getting the form right first time so there is less risk of rejection and the loss of the registration fee.
As our guide is not currently available for sale, you can email us to express an interest in it and we will notify you when it becomes available.
What a Lasting Power of Attorney does
Any person, who wishes their affairs to be taken care of in the event they are unable to do so for reasons of health or mental health, can sign a lasting power of attorney while they are well. That is before they lose mental capacity. The individual must be found to be mentally competent at the time of the document’s being signed.
When you have signed and registered a lasting power of attorney if you later become unable to handle your affairs any longer, then the attorney can make the necessary decisions for you because you are unable to do so any longer. If you do not have a lasting power of attorney in place, if you then lose the mental capacity, it is too late to make a lasting power of attorney. In such a case, someone would apply on your behalf to the Court of Protection for the Court to appoint an attorney. This process is very slow and very expensive – in the meantime it leaves your affairs and care tied up or out of your hands. This is why most people would prefer to make a lasting power of attorney. It is effectively an insurance against having to use the other route.
Now that you understand what the document is and how it is used, you also know when it is needed.