10 Reasons Why You Should Set Up a Lasting Power of Attorney
1 – Act Now Before It's Too Late
Many people think they will set up a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) at the point they need one. Unfortunately, you need to be able to demonstrate mental capacity when you set the LPA up, so if you have lost mental capacity, it is already too late to set one up.
2 – You Do Not Lose Immediate Control of Your Finances
A Lasting Power of Attorney will only become valid once you are no longer able to act; whilst you have total mental capacity, you will be able to deal with your affairs.
3 – You Can Appoint Who Acts on Your Behalf
When you set up a Lasting Power of Attorney, you will appoint people to act on your behalf; these people are known as Attorneys. You must nominate at least two. You can specify different Attorneys to deal with various aspects of your life. So, for example, you may appoint your children as Attorneys for your personal finances and possibly two fellow directors to deal with your business affairs.
4 – You Can Appoint Replacement Attorneys
Another reason people delay setting up an LPA is they think the people they appoint as Attorneys now will not be available in the future. This is not a problem as you can nominate replacements, even if the LPA has been activated.
5 – Setting Up A Lasting Power of Attorney is Easier Than You Think
You can set up and register a Lasting Power Of Attorney online; this link https://www.gov.uk/power-of-attorney/register has details on the process and allows you to write the LPA. You may want to speak to a solicitor or Local Advice Agency as we always recommend taking professional advice at the outset to avoid problems later down the line.
6 – Lasting Power of Attorney can Set Up To Accommodate Specific Wishes
There are two parts to a Lasting Power Of Attorney; one covers financial affairs and property, and the other Health and Welfare. So you may wish to restrict your attorneys to deal with the rental property but explicitly stating they cannot sell it. Likewise, on the Health and Welfare side, you can make a specific request about life-saving treatment.
7 – Setting Up a Lasting Power of Attorney Is Not Expensive
Each Power of Attorney cost £82 to register, so £164 for both Property and Finance & Health and Welfare. Of course, you may take some advice from your solicitor, but even so, the significance of this document means it is a small price to pay for future peace of mind.
8 – The Alternative to Having No Lasting Power Of Attorney Can Be Expensive
Suppose there is no Lasting Power of Attorney in place. In that case, your family will have to go through the Court of Protection, which involves setting up a Deputyship and paying Regular Annual Supervision fees, which will be more costly than registering an LPA.
9 – Having No Lasting Power Of Attorney Can Be A Long Drawn Out Process
If you have no Lasting Power of Attorney, your family and representatives will have to apply for Deputyship which can take up to a year; in the meantime, you will be in limbo without anyone authorised to act on your behalf.
10 – Lasting Power Attorney = Peace of Mind
Having a Power of Attorney in place will give you peace of mind. You will know that your family can act in your best interest following your instructions to make sure your wishes are carried out and they do not have to deal with a potentially long drawn out process with the Court of Protection.