A Lasting Power of Attorney or LPA will protect you in the future, should you ever become unable to make your own decisions. It allows you to appoint a trusted attorney who will manage your affairs on your behalf.
By making a Lasting Power of Attorney, you can give your loved ones legal authority to assist you in the event that you need them to. Without a Lasting Power of Attorney, they would need to apply to court to obtain an order before they could take any action on your behalf. This can be time-consuming and could potentially leave you and them in difficulty, with no one able to pay bills for you or sign agreements in respect of your care.
There are two different types of Lasting Power of Attorney, one in respect of property and financial affairs and one that deals with health and welfare. You can make one or both, appointing someone to make decisions for you, should you ever lose the capacity to do so yourself.
Our Lasting Power of Attorney solicitors in London have extensive experience in dealing with the granting of powers in this area, and we can discuss your needs and ensure that you have the right documentation in place so that your family can help you as required in the future.
Why choose Huggins Lewis Foskett for your Lasting Power of Attorney?
We understand how important it is to put the right legal framework in place for the future. Having a valid Lasting Power of Attorney is part of that, and we can ensure that you understand the implications of signing and that you know how to choose the right attorney to deal with your affairs, should this ever be necessary.
Our team are friendly and approachable and will provide clear advice tailored to what is in your best interests.
We work on a fixed-fee basis where possible, so that you have certainty over the costs involved in making a Lasting Power of Attorney.
Our Lasting Powers of Attorney service
Making a Lasting Power of Attorney
We can advise you of the benefits of making a Lasting Power of Attorney and how this could help you and your family in the future. We will take your unique circumstances into account and talk through any issues you may be concerned about.
We understand that thinking about the future is not always easy, and you will find our team to be sensitive and understanding. We are familiar with the difficulties people may face and are always happy to talk through matters with you so that you know your options.
In particular, we can discuss with you who might be suitable to act on your behalf and what powers you wish to give them. You can appoint more than one attorney if you wish, and give them permission to act jointly, meaning they would need to make all decisions together, or jointly and severally, meaning that an attorney could make a decision on their own without the consent of the others.
Registering a Lasting Power of Attorney
A Lasting Power of Attorney needs to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian before it can be used. Lasting Powers of Attorney can be registered as soon as they have been signed, or they can be kept until they are needed and registered at that point.
By registering a Lasting Power of Attorney straight away, you can be sure that there are no problems with it and that it is ready to use. The registration process can take three months or more. There is also a further four-week notification period during which those you want to be notified about the Lasting Power of Attorney can raise an objection.
A Lasting Power of Attorney in respect of health and welfare cannot be used until the donor, i.e. the person signing the document, has lost the mental capacity to make their own decisions. A property and financial Lasting Power of Attorney can be used straight away if you wish. This can be helpful if you are unable to get to the bank or if you need help with your financial affairs while you are away.
We can register a Lasting Power of Attorney for you and deal with any enquiries raised by the Office of the Public Guardian. We can also advise you as to when it will be best to deal with the registration.
A Living Will, also known as an advance decision, allows you to make decisions as to what medical treatment and healthcare you want in the future, should you ever be unable to communicate them yourself.
You can specify which medical treatments you do not want to receive, including treatment that might keep you alive, although you cannot refuse food and drink by mouth and basic care.
You can have both a Living Will and a Lasting Power of Attorney. The most recently signed document will be followed if the two documents contain different provisions.
It is important to discuss your intentions with both your medical practitioners and your family wherever possible. Our team can talk through the option of making a Living Will with you and answer any questions you may have. We know that this can be a difficult subject, and you can be assured that we will approach it sensitively.
If you ask us to prepare a Living Will for you, we will take into account any Lasting Power of Attorney you have, so that the two documents do not contain conflicting provisions.
Advice for Attorneys
The role of attorney can be onerous and involve substantial responsibility. We advise attorneys in respect of both property and financial and health and welfare Lasting Powers of Attorney to provide guidance and support.
An attorney is responsible for making important decisions. These could range from decisions about health treatments to deciding where someone should live and whether their home should be sold. The job can also involve a considerable amount of administrative work.
Record keeping needs to be carried out carefully, and it is important that an attorney does not exceed their authority. Legal advice can be helpful in respect of registering a Lasting Power of Attorney and ensuring that the donor’s affairs are kept in order.
Lasting Power of Attorney disputes
Emotions may be running high when someone needs an attorney to step in and deal with their affairs on their behalf. This can sometimes mean that disagreements arise, either between attorneys, where more than one has been appointed, or between an attorney and the donor’s family.
Disputes could cover issues such as where the donor should live, whether their home should be sold, what medical treatment they should have, where their money should be invested and whether the attorney is managing their funds properly. There could also be allegations that the attorney is not acting in the donor’s best interests or even that they are dealing dishonestly with the donor’s assets.
Our LPA team have experience in dealing with Lasting Power of Attorney disputes. We can intervene early on your behalf to try and resolve matters and advise you of your options.
Our Lasting Power of Attorney fees
Fixed fee Lasting Powers of Attorney
We can generally prepare a Lasting Power of Attorney or Living Will on your behalf on a fixed fee basis so that you will know from the outset how much the costs will be.
Hourly rates for Lasting Powers of Attorney legal advice
For more complex matters, we will make sure you have a lawyer with the right level of expertise and charge based on their hourly rate.
For more information, see our page on hourly pricing.
Speak to our Lasting Power of Attorney solicitors in South Woodford, London
Do you need clear, sensible guidance on signing a Lasting Power of Attorney or making a Living Will?