Executing a Lasting Power of Attorney is important for anyone wanting to make it easy for their family and loved ones to deal with their affairs, should they be mentally or physically incapacitated.
Although our solicitors can help you through every step of preparing, executing and registering a Lasting Power of Attorney, you may wish to find out more about what the terminology means. As such, we have listed a few key terms below and their definitions.
A Lasting Power of Attorney, or LPA, is the name of the legal document that is used to appoint a person or persons to make decisions or take actions on your behalf, in a situation where you are unable to. There are two types of Lasting Power of Attorney, defined below.
A Health and Care LPA allows the person appointed as the attorney to make medical decisions on the donor’s behalf. This includes decisions about hospital treatment and care.
A Property and Financial Affairs LPA will allow the person appointed to make decisions around money, property and business affairs on the donor’s behalf.
An Enduring Power of Attorney is a near equivalent to a Property and Financial Affairs LPA. They were replaced by LPAs on 1 October 2007 in order to make the process more streamlined and reduce some safeguarding issues that were problematic with the EPA process. An EPA cannot be executed now, but those that have been signed and dated before that date are still valid.
A donor is the person who creates a Lasting Power of Attorney, and by doing so has made steps to protect their assets, should something happen to them that prevents them from being able to make decisions themselves.
The attorney or attorneys are the people named in an LPA to act on behalf of the donor. This is the person with the decision making responsibility, attorneys have strict rules to abide by when acting on behalf of the donor, most importantly to always act in their best interest.
The Court of Protection is a specialised court that can make decisions on financial or welfare matters for people who lack mental capacity and can’t make decisions for themselves. If a person does not have the capacity to make an LPA, family members can apply to the Court of Protection for a deputyship order to deal with that person’s affairs, this is a more drawn out and expensive process which is why we encourage clients to execute and register their LPA’s sooner rather than later.
To lack mental capacity is to reach a stage of life where a person can no longer make decisions for themselves. This can be brought on by illness or accident.
A deputy is someone appointed by the Court of Protection to make decisions for someone who lacks mental capacity. Someone will usually be appointed as a deputy where no LPA has been put in place.
As solicitors in Crosby, we are trusted by the local community to ensure our clients’ affairs are in order. We offer a variety of services ranging from commercial property to residential conveyancing, as well as helping people with Lasting Power of Attorney matters. Contact us today, to see how we can assist you.