A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document whereby you can give one or more persons (your attorneys) the authority to make decisions on your behalf, in the event that you are unable to make decisions for yourself.
There are two types of LPA; one deals with financial matters, and one deals with decisions relating to medical treatments and care.
Here are 5 reasons why you should make a LPA:
- You are in control
Under a LPA, you are able to choose the people you trust to make decisions on your behalf and in your best interests. Without a LPA, if you are unable to make your own decisions, the Court of Protection has the power to appoint people to manage your affairs via a deputyship order. The court may therefore appoint people whom you would not have chosen.
- You can save time
The LPA process can be simple as it usually only takes around 2 months for the documents to be registered. If you do not have a LPA in place, the Court procedure can be much more time-consuming, sometimes taking up to 6-9 months to complete. During this time, your family members would not have the authority to help you with your affairs, which can add undue stress for them.
- You can provide guidance to your attorneys
The LPA includes an option for you to include preferences and instructions for your attorneys in relation to certain decisions. These can help your attorneys deal with your affairs in the way you would want them to. However, it is important not make these too restrictive. A solicitor can help provide you with useful examples and guide you through the process.
- You can save money
Making a LPA involves paying a registration fee of £82 to the Office of the Public Guardian and legal fees where you are instructing a solicitor to assist you.
On the other hand, without a LPA, the deputyship application involves a court fee of £365 to apply, legal fees if a solicitor will be assisting your loved ones as well as ongoing annual fees to the court.
- You can have peace of mind for you and your family
By putting a LPA in place, you can ensure yourself and your family with peace in mind that, should you be unable to make decisions for yourself, your chosen attorneys can easily step in and help you deal with your affairs. This should also be beneficial in helping to avoid any potential disagreements or conflicts between family members.