Appointing a loved one or close friend as your ‘Attorney’ provides them with the legal authority to act on your behalf, whether dealing with your financial affairs or making decisions about your care and welfare.
When an unforeseen accident occurs or your health begins to fail – either physically or mentally – the Attorney is there to step in and pay the bills, collect the pension, ensure you get washed and fed as well as deal with a whole range of other situations.
Whilst it may not be pleasant to think about, none of us know what’s around the corner, and acting now can save a lot of distress and inconvenience if something does happen to you.
Today, so many of us live fast-moving, hard-working, lives, and, as such, we are seeing a lot more people develop health issues which leave many of those affected physically or mentally incapable of carrying out normal everyday tasks.
As long as you are of sound mind and are over 18, you can execute a Lasting Power of Attorney which has to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian first before it can be validly used.
I would recommend that everyone over the age of 40 should have a Lasting Power of Attorney – just in case the unthinkable happens.
- Which type? There are two types and you will need to consider which type of Lasting Power of Attorney you wish to make. A Health and Welfare LPA, as it states, deals with issues involving care and welfare. Tasks can range from taking you to the shops, arranging doctor visits, or arranging for you to move into a care home if you are no longer able to live at home. The second is a Property and Financial Affairs LPA which will authorise your Attorney to pay your bills, manage your bank accounts or possibly sell your home should you be unable to live there any longer and care for yourself.
- Who do I Appoint? It is important to take time to decide who you wish to appoint as your Attorney. It could a close friend, family member or a professional, such as a solicitor. You can either choose just one person, or several, whom you think will have your best interests at heart.
- Register your Lasting Power of Attorney with the Office of the Public Guardian – This is compulsory before an LPA can be used. Be warned that this whole process can take up to three months, so don’t leave it too late.
At Emyr Pierce Solicitors, our estates and administration team provide a comprehensive range of elderly client services from drawing up lasting powers of attorney, applications to the Office of the Public Guardian for the appointment of a deputy, advice on asset management to minimise inheritance tax and long term care fees and registration of enduring powers of attorney.
For an immediate quotation or discuss your concerns with a specialist, please telephone us on 029 20 616002 Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm and on Saturday 10am to 4pm or visit www.emyrpierce.co.uk or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.