What is a Lasting Power of Attorney
Putting in place a power of attorney can give you peace of mind when moving in to a care home. It ensures that someone you trust is in charge of your affairs. This may be a member of your family, a carer or a friend to act on your behalf, if you are unable to for reasons of ill health. When you come to live with us at Friary Care we will help you with this.
If you’re aged 18 or older and have the mental ability to make financial, property and medical decisions for yourself, you can arrange for someone else to make these decisions for you in the future. This legal authority is called “lasting power of attorney”.
If you don’t make an LPA, and later become unable to make certain decisions for yourself, someone may need to apply to the Court of Protection to become your deputy. This gives them similar powers to that of an attorney. A relative or friend can apply to be your deputy, or a professional may be appointed. The process of becoming a deputy is a lot more time-consuming and expensive than an LPA. A deputy must also do some things on an ongoing basis, such as paying an annual fee and submitting an annual report, so it is usually easier for someone to be an attorney rather than a deputy.
The person who is given power of attorney is known as the “attorney” and must be over 18 years old. You are known as the “donor”.
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) allows you to give someone you trust the legal authority to make decisions on your behalf in case you later become unable to make decisions for yourself.
There are two types of LPA, one is for all property and financial affairs and the other is for all matters of health and welfare. Because we are dealing with these matters on a regular basis, we can guide you through this process. An LPA for Property and Financial Affairs covers decisions about money and property. An LPA for Health and Welfare covers decisions about health and personal Welfare.
If for whatever reason you decide no longer look after your own affairs, or become unable to because of ill health and you have not got LPAs in place it could be very stressful for you.
Your attorney can be anyone over the age of 18, such as a partner, family member or friend. You need to trust your attorney to understand your wishes, respect your values and make the decisions that you would want. Your attorney must be able to make potentially difficult decisions on your behalf. You should discuss your wishes with anyone who you would like to act as your attorney. Your attorney can only make decisions for you if you have lost capacity and cannot make the decision yourself. If you have capacity, then you can still make your own decisions and your attorney cannot override them.
If you want to you can have more than one attorney. There is no limit to the number of attorneys you can have. You can also choose one or several replacement attorneys who will take over if your original attorney cannot continue to act.
Your attorney can be anyone over the age of 18, such as a partner, family member or friend. You need to trust your attorney to understand your wishes, respect your values and make the decisions that you would want. Your attorney must be able to make potentially difficult decisions on your behalf. You should discuss your wishes with anyone who you would like to act as your attorney
There are three key steps to making an LPA
- Choose your attorney and the other people involved
- Complete the form (available from the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG)
- Register the form with the OPG An LPA must be registered with the OPG before it can be used. The OPG is part of the government’s Ministry of Justice department. It manages the LPA registration process and has a register of all LPAs. It can also investigate if somebody has concerns about the way an attorney is acting. Alternatively, a solicitor can do it for you
You can get an LPA form using one of these three ways: –
- ask the OPG to send the form to you (PO Box 16185 Birmingham B2 2WH)
- download it from their website https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/office-of-the-public-guardian
- complete it online using their digital tool here www.lastingpotheyrofattorney.service.gov.uk/home .