Having a Lasting Power of Attorney can ensure that, should you ever suffer an accident or serious illness, someone you trust can make decisions on your behalf. There are two types of power of attorney in the UK, which allow your attorney to make either healthcare or financial decisions for you. Read on to find out more about the different types of Lasting Powers of Attorney and how Acumen can ensure your financial wishes are carried out.
What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document that lets you, the ‘donor’, appoint one or more people you trust to become your ‘attorneys’. They then help you make decisions or make decisions on your behalf.
In the unfortunate event that you suffer an accident or become seriously ill and can no longer make your own decisions, a Lasting Power of Attorney gives you more control over what happens to you.
Types of power of attorney
There are two types of Lasting Powers of Attorney:
- Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney.
- Property and Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney.
Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney
A Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney covers health and welfare decisions made on your behalf and can only be used once you’ve lost mental capacity. Your attorney can make decisions about things such as:
- Medical care
- Moving into a care home
- Your daily routine
You can also give permission for your attorney to make decisions about life-saving treatment and whether or not you receive any vaccinations.
Property and Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney
A Property and Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney enables your attorney to make financial decisions on your behalf. This type of power of attorney can be used while you still have mental capacity or you can stipulate that it only comes into force if you lose capacity.
Your attorney can make decisions about things such as:
- Selling your home
- Paying bills
- Managing a bank account
- Collecting benefits or a pension
You can either restrict the types of decisions your attorney makes or give them full decision-making control. They must keep accounts and ensure their money is kept separate from yours.
You can ask for regular details of how much money you have and how much has been spent. If you lose mental capacity, these details can be sent to your solicitor or a family member for an added layer of protection.
How to make a Lasting Power of Attorney
Making a Lasting Power of Attorney is a relatively straightforward three-step process:
- Choose your attorney(s), you can have more than one.
- Fill in the forms to appoint them as an attorney.
- Register your LPA with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG).
It costs £82 to register a Lasting Power of Attorney unless you get a reduction or exemption and you can cancel it if you no longer need it or want to make a new one.
It’s worth bearing in mind that registering for a Lasting Power of Attorney is slightly different in the current climate, which you can read more about here.
Contact Acumen today
Acumen Financial Partnership offers Lasting Power of Attorney guidance to provide the framework that ensures your financial wishes are met. It is extremely important that if you may have significant investments, that you have the appropriate additional wording to allow for professional management of these investments, and this is an area on which we are particularly concerned that our clients take advice.
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