Should I get a Lasting Power of Attorney?

If you were to become ill and no longer had the ability to make decisions for yourself, what would happen?

Losing your mental capacity isn’t the nicest question to ponder, but unfortunately it’s a necessary one that not enough of us are thinking about.

According to the Alzheimer’s Society, 850,000 people in the UK suffer from dementia. As just one condition that would reduce your ability to make decisions about your finances, property and health, the burden of responsibility could be left with your family.

What is lasting power of attorney?

Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document that gives you the power to appoint one or more people to make decisions on your behalf when you are no longer able to.

There are two types; one for decisions regarding your health and welfare and one for your property and financial affairs.

For the latter, a person of your choice (attorney) will be appointed and given the power to make decisions on your behalf about money and property, such as managing your bank account or selling your home. On the other hand, an LPA regarding your health and welfare can include decisions about moving into a care home or life-sustaining treatment.

The difference between the two is that a health and welfare LPA can only be used when you’re unable to make your own decisions. However a property and financial affairs LPA can be used as soon as it’s registered, as long as you grant permission.

Important considerations

Don’t leave it too late – it’s an easy thing to put off but it’s crucial you set up an LPA while you are still mentally able. Once it has been done you and your family will have peace of mind.

It’s not just the older generation that need to consider getting an LPA. Those who take part in extreme sports or go on adventure holidays should also think about planning ahead as a safeguard and for peace of mind.

Who should I choose as my attorney?

You should choose the person you want as your attorney carefully. The person must be over 18 and should be someone you are sure will always act in your best interests.

You can choose to appoint just one person, or more than one. There are also further options for how they can act on your behalf. For example you may decide they always have to make decisions together, or you may decide attorneys can make decisions on their own. There are a variety of options available to you, and it’s essential you consider each carefully before coming to a decision.

While it can be daunting thinking about the future, organising a Lasting Power of Attorney really is the best way to protect your loved ones and give you peace of mind.

Make your appointment to discuss Power of Attorney

Here at Emerald Law, we can help you plan for the future. Whether  you want to discuss power of attorney, or need a wills, trusts and probate solicitor, we are here to help.

We will deal with your enquiry sensitively and discuss the options available to you. Fill out the enquiry form below or call one of our friendly advisors today for a no-obligation consultation.

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