What are lasting powers of attorney?

Lasting powers of attorney are two of the most important documents any of us will ever have. If you’ve never heard of them, and even if you have, this blog explains why they matter.

Have you heard of lasting powers of attorney?

Would you know what to do if a family member took ill? Or what if you lost capacity? Would your family or your partner be able to care for you? These are questions we all hope we won’t have to answer.

So, what happens if we find ourselves in this situation? A lasting power of attorney (LPA) allows you to nominate someone (an attorney) to make decisions on your behalf, if you can no longer make them yourself.

This blog explains what LPAs are and outlines a story which demonstrates why these legal documents matter. Please feel free to get in touch if you have any questions.

The importance of having the right LPAs in place

Not too long ago, we were with a gentleman who cared for his mother. The gentleman had an appointment with social services regarding his mother’s care; he had an LPA in place and felt confident he could decide how she was cared for.

Unfortunately, the LPA which was in place was for property and finance, not health and welfare. As there was no power of attorney in place for health and welfare, the gentleman had no legal say in his mother’s care. His mother was sectioned and placed in a care home that day.

LPAs: what they are and why you need to know about them

50% of people in the UK are not aware that lasting powers of attorney are in two parts, according to the insurer Royal London. The first power covers property and finance and the second covers health and welfare. Of the people who had heard of LPAs, most (76%) had only heard of the financial powers of attorney.

The distress caused to the family by the events surrounding their loved one’s care was considerable. Especially as they believed that they had the right powers in place, should they be faced with this situation.

My Family Legacy can help put the correct LPAs in place, saving you emotional turmoil later.

What would happen to your wellbeing and finances if you lost capacity?

How you set up LPAs influences the cost. To instruct a will writer to do this for you costs several hundred pounds for both powers. However, if you need to set up LPAs retrospectively, a specialist lawyer is required and fees can be as much £5,500 for the initial work, along with maintenance fees of £2,500 per year. The idea of family members facing this is a scary – and expensive – thought for most of us.  

It’s never too soon to consider an LPA

My Family Legacy can provide you with guidance and even set up LPAs for you. These important legal documents protect you, your loved ones and could save you future heartache. Give us a call. We’re happy to explain your options and answer any questions you may have.

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