Watkins Smith - Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)

Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)

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What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?

A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) allows you to legally appoint a person to make decisions on your behalf should you become unable to make the decisions yourself due to loss of mental capacity ( Mental Capacity Act 2005).

The LPA falls into 2 categories and can cover both or either depending on individual circumstance. It is important that the LPA is agreed & executed whilst the individual has capacity, however registration can be delayed until such time as it is needed or can be registered immediately.
 

Personal Health And Welfare

This would come into force once you are unable to make decision yourself regarding your personal health and welfare. Your appointed attorney will be required to make decisions that are always in your best interests. Decisions your attorney would need to make will be around your day to day living and extend to what medical treatment & intervention you may need. Clearly a great deal of thought needs to be given as to who you appoint as your attorney’s as the decisions they make are vital to your on ongoing wellbeing.

Should your capacity return and you become able to make decisions yourself the LPA will lapse until such time it is needed again.
 

Property and Financial Affairs

Again this would come into force if you became unable to make decisions around your property and finances. The LPA would permit your attorney to make decisions on these matters as if you were making them yourself and should always act in your best interests. Again it is very important to give thought as to who you would want to be your attorney as they will manage your finances, including potentially making investment choices ,on your behalf. It must be remembered that the attorney must make his / her decisions based on what is appropriate for your needs and not be concerned with the needs of potential beneficiaries of your estate.

It is perfectly acceptable for the attorney to seek advice on tax efficiency and potential liability to IHT if this is appropriate and take action where necessary.
 

An LPA provides peace of mind that someone you trust will be taking care of your decision making at a time when you are vulnerable.

 

Please contact us should your require more information on this matter.