In life, preparation for the future is as crucial as managing the present. At Burd Ward Solicitors, we understand the significance of forward-thinking, especially when it involves legal matters that affect you and your loved ones. A critical component of such planning is understanding and setting up a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA).
What is a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)?
A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legal document that allows you to appoint one or more people (known as ‘attorneys’) to make decisions on your behalf. This arrangement becomes particularly important if you become unable to make your own decisions due to reasons such as illness, an accident, or diminished mental capacity.
Types of LPA
There are two types of LPAs in the UK:
- Health and Welfare LPA: This covers decisions about your health and personal welfare, including medical care, daily routine (e.g., eating and dressing), living arrangements, and life-sustaining treatment. It can only be used when you’re unable to make your own decisions.
- Property and Financial Affairs LPA: This allows your attorney to manage your finances, such as managing bank accounts, paying bills, collecting pensions or benefits, and selling your home. Unlike the Health and Welfare LPA, this can be used as soon as it’s registered, with your permission.
Why is a LPA important?
- Control: An LPA ensures that decisions made on your behalf align with your wishes and interests. Without it, there might be uncertainty or disputes about who makes these decisions.
- Protection: It provides peace of mind, knowing that someone you trust is in charge of your affairs if you’re unable to manage them yourself.
- Legal Authority: An LPA grants legal authority to your attorney, allowing them to act on your behalf without legal hindrances.
- Prevents Delay: Without an LPA, if you lose mental capacity, there may be a delay as a court decides who should take responsibility. This process can be lengthy and costly.
Setting up a LPA
Creating an LPA involves several steps, including choosing your attorney(s), filling out the relevant forms, and registering the LPA with the Office of the Public Guardian. It’s essential to consider who to appoint carefully, as they will have significant control over your affairs
How Burd Ward Solicitors can help
At Burd Ward Solicitors, we specialise in providing expert advice on LPAs. We can guide you through the process, ensuring that your LPA reflects your wishes and is legally robust. Our team can help with:
- Choosing the right type of LPA
- Understanding the responsibilities and powers of an attorney
- Completing and registering the LPA forms
- Providing legal advice tailored to your specific circumstances
A Lasting Power of Attorney is a vital legal tool that ensures your affairs are managed according to your wishes, even when you are not in a position to make decisions yourself. At Burd Ward Solicitors, we’re committed to guiding you through this crucial process with sensitivity, professionalism, and expertise.
For further information or to arrange an appointment, please contact us on 0151 639 8273.