Lasting Powers of Attorney – You decide
Having a Will in place that appoints Executors to manage affairs and administer an estate after death is common, as it should be, but appointing who should look after affairs in the event that there is loss of capacity due to stroke, disease or head injury or a catastrophic accident is something that many people shy away from.
In order for someone, such as an attorney, to assist, then they must be empowered using a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) document which can relate to Property and Financial affairs, Health and Welfare, or both.
It’s not a particularly nice scenario to envisage and plan for but appointing attorneys to help ensures there is continuity in the management of affairs, and the attorneys that have been chosen and entrusted to act, can.
As the average lifespan increases, the chances of people suffering capacity loss increases as well. However, mental incapacity can affect anyone of any age, and it is never too early to plan for it.
When considering preparing LPAs there is often more to think about than you would imagine. We can help people to understand not only the legal implications of appointing attorneys but also the practical implications – those that will affect the management of day to day affairs.
If there is a loss of capacity and there is no LPA in place, it is up to family and friends that wish to assist in managing affairs to embark on making an application to the Court of Protection to be appointed as the person’s Deputy. This can be a lengthy and costly process – one that inevitably places more burden on the appointed Deputy. A Deputyship Order of this nature is not ideal and should not be relied on if possible.