Lasting Powers of Attorney

A Lasting Power of Attorney (an LPA) is, we think, one of the most important legal documents that you draw up during your lifetime, so much so that, in order to try to encourage our clients to put these protections in place, if you instruct us to draft one type of LPA, we will provide the second type for free. Click here for more details on our prices.


 
Family Baking

What is an LPA?

An LPA is a document in which you give a person of your choice the authority to make decisions for you in relation to your property and finances, or health and welfare, in the event that you are unable to do so for whatever reason.

It might be that you have an accident or suffer a sudden illness and become temporarily unable to make decisions and need someone to step up for you. Or it might sadly be something more permanent

There are two types of Lasting Power of Attorney; one for Property and Financial Affairs and the other for Health and Welfare.

The perception of LPAs

The perception of LPAs is that they are only for the elderly but this is absolutely not the case. People in all age groups should have them. We all have them here at Vine and lawyers are traditionally rubbish at getting their own houses in order!

In the absence of a valid LPA, if someone becomes unable to make their own decisions because of a lack of capacity, an application must be made to the Court of Protection for the Court to appoint a Deputy to act.

Lasting Powers of Attorney can be tailored to your individual needs. If you run a business you can draw up a second LPA for Property and Financial Affairs so that the business can stay active if you can’t run it. This second LPA is commonly referred to as a Business LPA.

Property and Financial Affairs LPA

This LPA allows your attorney to deal with all of your financial affairs in the same way that you normally can. They can buy and sell property, invest money, set up and cancel direct debits and so on. This means that if you are ever unable to manage your finances yourself, your attorney can help you with this.

Health and Welfare LPA

This LPA can only be used by your attorneys if you lack the ability to make decisions for yourself. This is because the decisions made under this type of LPA are so personal that if you are able to, you should always make them for yourself. This covers decisions like where you live, what medical treatment you receive, even down to the types of foods that you do and don’t want to eat.
Although Health & Welfare LPAs are only used as a last resort, most care homes now require one to be in place so that they can properly care for each individual in the way that they know the person would have chosen for themselves.

Business LPAs

If you are a business owner, you should think about putting in place a Business LPA separately to your personal ones. If you are unable to run your business, either temporarily or permanently, it will be crucial for your family and business partners to ensure of continuity of business.

The Business LPA will set out who you choose to continue running your business while you incapacitated. This might not always be the same person you appoint to look after you in your personal LPA because you might prefer to appoint someone with specific knowledge and experience to effectively carry out the running of your business.

Our LPA Services

We offer a number of different options to assist you in preparing Lasting Powers of Attorney. Get in touch with us to discuss what you need.

General Power of Attorney

Sometimes you just need to appoint someone to look after your affairs for a brief time, such as if you are travelling abroad. In this type of situation, we can draw up a General Power of Attorney for you which authorises your chosen attorney to take action on your behalf.

If you need a General Power of Attorney, give us a call and we will give you quote. We usually charge a fixed-fee for these.

Court of Protection

If you have not drawn up a Lasting Power of Attorney and for some reason become unable to manage your own affairs, an application will need to be made to the Court of Protection so that someone can be authorised to act on your behalf.  

We can help with this application but would always advise our clients, where possible, to have an LPA in place so that they have assistance from day one if needed. Applications to the Court of Protection are more costly than drawing up an LPA and are often lengthy which can lead to difficulties in the short term.

If you believe you need to make an application to the Court of Protection on behalf of someone else, please give us a call and speak to us as soon as you are able to so that we can advise you as early on as possible.

Registration of Enduring Powers of Attorney

Prior to 2007, it was possible for individuals to put in place an Enduring Power of Attorney (an EPA). An EPA appointed an Attorney to act on the individuals behalf and the EPA could be used (unlike an LPA) without being registered. However if the donor of the EPA loses capacity these should be registered with the OPG in order to continue being used.

Advising attorneys on their role

We are able to provide advice and guidance to attorneys about the management of the donors affairs.

If you need some help with fulfilling your role as attorney, get in touch with us for a chat about how we can help you.