Plan for the future with a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a relatively new legal device in which you can nominate someone to deal with your affairs should you be unable to do so yourself. Katy Burgin, partner at law firm Norrie Waite & Slater explains.
Many people are concerned about what will happen to them in the event of losing mental capacity through such illnesses as Alzheimer's disease, dementia or a stroke. The idea behind the introduction of the LPA is that even someone with reduced mental capacity should still be able to exercise some control over what happens to them and their assets.
By setting up an LPA in advance, you are able to retain some control by choosing someone you trust to act as your attorney to deal with your financial and personal affairs. If you do not have an LPA, and later lose mental capacity, the Courts will appoint someone to manage your affairs and this may not be the person you would have chosen yourself.
There are two types of LPA available, each giving the attorney different powers as detailed below.
PROPERTY AND FINANCES LPA
- Dealing with bank and other financial accounts
- Buying and selling property, shares and other assets
- Dealing with taxes
PERSONAL WELFARE LPA
- Where you should live and who with
- Your day to day care
- Consenting to, or refusing, medical treatment on your behalf
You can tailor-make an LPA to suit your requirements, including limiting the scope as you see fit.
The new LPA provides people with the ability to exercise a much greater degree of control over their future in the event of loss of capacity.
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