What is Power of Attorney and when is it important?
What is a Lasting Power of Attorney (‘LPA’)?
An LPA is a legal document that appoints another person or persons to manage your financial affairs and/or health and welfare on your behalf.
What types of LPA are there?
There are two types of LPA:
- Finance and Property LPA - This enables your attorneys to make decisions regarding your bank accounts, savings, investments, property and to pay bills and expenses.
- Health and Welfare LPA - This enables your attorneys to make decisions about your care and medical treatment, including life sustaining treatment.
Each LPA is independent of the other, so you can have different attorneys on each one of you wish. You can also choose to just make one type of LPA if required.
Who can be my attorney?
Anyone can be your attorney, however it is essential that you trust your appointed attorney as they could ultimately have access to all of your finances and be in charge of your welfare.
More often than not, it is a family member, however if you cannot trust them to act in your best interests, then a friend or even solicitor can be your attorney.
If I am married, surely my spouse would have access to my accounts anyway?
Unfortunately not. Strictly speaking, any joint account is operated on the basis that both account holders give permission for the other to operate the account. If one person loses capacity, they can no longer give permission, so the bank can freeze the account until they see an LPA. Certainly any accounts held in your sole name would not be accessible by anyone else if you lost capacity unless they were appointed as your attorney.
What is the process?
You will need to make an appointment with one of our specialists to provide us with your instructions and to enable us to provide you will all of the necessary advice. The LPA will need to be signed by you, the solicitor and all of the attorneys, although not necessarily at the same time.
Once the LPA has been signed it is then sent for registration, which takes around 8-9 weeks. The LPA’s cannot be used until they have been registered.
To Prepare and register one type of LPA the cost is £375 plus VAT for a single person or £525 plus VAT for a couple.
To prepare and register both types of LPA the cost is £525 plus VAT for a single person or £800 plus VAT for a couple.
In addition to our fees, there is also a registration fee payable to the Office of Public Guardian in the sum of £82 per document.
If you would like a quote for Power of Attorney or to find out more about our services, please contact:Jennifer Wilkinson – firstname.lastname@example.org
Sarah Rostamlou-Andrews – email@example.com
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