As we get older, unfortunately, it becomes necessary to start thinking about what will happen when we’re gone or in the event that we lose capacity. In previous posts we have discussed Will-writing and why you should make a Will to ensure your wishes are adhered to. But what can you do to ensure that the same happens should you become unable to make decisions yourself?
The law allows for everyone over 18 and of sound mind to make a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) to choose who they would want to make decisions for them if they become incapable of doing so themselves. There are two different types of LPA, one dealing with property and finance and the other with health and welfare. This allows the donor (the person making the LPA) to chose different people to act for them in different areas. When making an LPA the donor also has the opportunity to restrict what powers their Attorney will have and provide guidance as to how they would wish them to act.
It is particularly important for people approaching retirement age, those with a history of dementia in the family and people with a stressful job or lifestyle to make an LPA. We would advise people to make an LPA whilst they are able, even if they don’t use it until many years later. In fact, we hope that they will never have to use it, but is it worth taking that chance?
The alternative for people who have not made a Lasting Power of Attorney is that the Court of Protection will appoint a deputy to manage their affairs, this could be a family member or an individual unknown to them. Even if a family member is appointed as deputy, there are supervision fees payable of up to £800.00pa as well as a one-off donor registration fee of £100.00.
Making an LPA with a company such as The Probate Bureau Ltd only costs around £600.00 with a £120.00 Court of Protection registration fee payable when you choose to register it. This could potentially save you thousands of pounds in Court of Protection fees.
If you have any questions in relation to the above please call us for a free consultation.