Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)
A Lasting Power of Attorney, or LPA, is a legal document designed to give someone you trust the authority to make decisions on your behalf if you are no longer able to do so through loss of capacity.
There are two types of LPA which empowers a named person, or persons, to look after your property and affairs or health and welfare decisions.
LPA Property & Affairs covers any financial aspects such as paying bills, running your bank and building society accounts, claiming any state benefits on your behalf and selling your home.
LPA Health & Welfare covers all medical and healthcare decisions including where you should live and what treatment you should, or should not receive.
Having an LPA in place is the first step towards protecting your estate and your wishes should you become incapacitated or incapable, either through accident or illness, of making financial, business or welfare decisions for yourself.
Many of us take out life insurance or critical illness cover to protect our loved ones should anything happen unexpectedly. Yet few of us ensure that the money that we've already earned is protected in such circumstances.
Making an LPA is as important as making a Will - it can save people unnecessary trauma and expense and makes sure their own wishes are followed whatever happens.
Why do I need a Lasting Power of Attorney?
Without such a document in place, if you lose capacity, the courts will appoint a 'deputy' to act for you. This process could be lengthy and costly and additional ongoing fees may be incurred.
An Estate Planning Consultant can advise you on how to put such a document in place and also act as your Certificate Provider, ensuring the document is correctly drawn up according to the latest rules and regulations.
The Next Step
*https://www.gov.uk/government/news/wider-audiencetargeted- as-lasting-power-of-attorney-lpa-process-goesonline [Accessed 9 Sept 2015]