Lasting Powers of Attorney are invaluable as they allow a person to nominate someone that they trust implicitly to handle their affairs with as much right and discretion as they have themselves. As such, they are very powerful documents and it is vital that you consider the matter carefully before proceeding and we are happy to discuss the implications of entering into a Power of Attorney with you, or indeed if you are being appointed as an attorney and require advice about your obligations, please give us a call.
There are two forms of Powers of Attorney - Property and Affairs and Personal Welfare. The first deals with all matters of a finanical nature and the second with personal care and medical treatment.
Property and Affairs
The Property and Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney allows your chosen attorney to manage anything of a finanical nature for you and this Power of Attorney can be used at any time during your lifetime, whether you have mental capacity or not. Therefore, they can be used by your attorney if you take an extended holiday abroad, have a stay in hospital, lose mental capacity or at any other time to suit you.
The Personal Welfare Power of Attorney can only ever be used by your attorney if you lack mental capacity to make a decision for yourself. They can then make decisions such as where you are to live, whether or not medical treatment shall be administered or witheld etc.
The procedure for creating either Lasting Power of Attorney is the same. A relatively lengthy Document needs to be completed and signed by perosn creating the Power of Attorney (the Donor) and your signature has to be witnessed. A Certificate Provider must also sign the Power of Attorney to confirm that you have the mental capacity to sign the form and that you are not acting under any undue influence. The Certificate Provider must be a professional who is qualified to determine whether you have capacity (ie a solicitor, a medical professional etc) or someone independent who has known you for over 2 years ie a friend, neighbour etc. If we are acting for you in the creation of your Lasting Power of Attorney, then we are more than happy to aslo act as your Certificate Provider.
Once you have completed your part of the Lasting Power of Attorney, it needs to be signed by your attorney, again in the presence of a witness. You need to nominate at least one person who you know personally to be sent a formal notice of your intention to register the Lasting Power of attorney. The person receiving the Notice does not need to do anything unless they feel that you do not have capacity to enter into a Power of attorney, or if they feel that you may have been coerced into creating the Power of Attorney.
Once the Lasting Power of Attorney has been signed by all parties and the Notice sent, it needs to be submitted to the Office of the Public Guardian for registration which takes a number of weeks. A fee is also payable which may vary depending on your income. We can let you knwothe current timescales at the Office of the Public Guardian and the current fee when you come to see us about your Power of Attorney. Once the registration is complete, the Power of Attorney is ready to use, however, if you do not wish for it to be used straight away, you can store it securely at home or we can hold it for you and release it in the future depending on yuor instructions.
Please contact us to make an appointment if yuo wish to proceed with a Power of Attorney or if you require any advice. Our Lasting Power of Attorney Questionnaires can be found below.
Barrass White Legal
G4, The Enterprise Village
Prince Albert Gardens
North East Lincolnshire
Tel: 01472 353961
SRA Registration Number: 607982
Or use our contact form.
We are available Monday to Thursday 9-5 and Friday 9-4.30 and will endeavour to respond to all emails and telephone messages within one working day. If we are not available when you call, please leave a message or send an email and we will get back to you.
We will also be available at other times, by appointment.