Lasting Powers of Attorney Lawyers Liverpool & London
A Power of Attorney is a document by which one person (the ‘donor’) gives another person you trust (the ‘attorney’) the power to look after your affairs and to act on your behalf and in your name. It may be completely general, entitling the attorney to do almost everything the donor could themselves do, or it may be limited to certain specific matters.
If you require guidance regarding your Power of Attorney, and require assistance to draw this up, please get in touch with our Power of Attorney lawyers today on 0151 236 5000 or complete our online contact form for more information.
A Power may be General or Lasting.
- General Power of Attorney (GPA) confers authority on an attorney to do anything which the donor can do in relation to financial decisions. However, the power will automatically terminate upon the donor loosing mental capacity.
- Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) takes two distinct forms:
- Financial Decisions - where you appoint people you trust to look after your finances (bank accounts, investments, property etc)
- Health and Care Decisions - where you appoint people you trust to look after your welfare requirements (daily care, medical treatment etc)
The LPA does not terminate even if you later loose mental capacity in the future
Your attorney should be someone you know well and trust. They must be at least 18 and must not be or become bankrupt. You can choose more than one person to be your attorney.
If you choose more than one attorney, you need to decide whether you want your attorneys to act "jointly" or "separately". You can choose a replacement Attorney in case one or more of your attorneys cannot or does not want to act. The important point to consider is to ensure a situation does not arise were you do not have a validly appointed attorney "in place" to represent your interests.
Your attorney under a GPA can act immediately. An attorney under a LPA can only act once the LPA has been registered with the Court. In addition, the Health LPA can only be used by the attorney once you have actually lost mental capacity. Contrast the Financial LPA that can be used by the attorney alongside you continuing to manage your own finances. If you do however become mentally incapable, they can only act in your best interests.
If you have a GPA or a Financial LPA, they can only make financial decisions such as; buy or sell property, manage investments, carry on a business and access your personal information.
If you have a Health LPA, they can make any decisions about your health and wellbeing, such as: where you live, who you live with, access your medical records, what you eat, what you wear and how you spend your day. They will also be able to give and refuse consent to medical treatment according to your best interests. The Welfare LPA also deals specifically with the question of life sustaining treatment.
You can put legally binding restrictions and conditions on your attorney's powers and the scope of their authority. You can also provide guidance, which can be useful when they have to make decisions on your behalf.
An independent person is required to complete a Certificate to confirm you are entering into the LPA of your own free will and that you understand its purpose. This is an important safeguard and is a condition of the LPA process. At Gregory Abrams Davidson Solicitors we can act in this role as the Certificate Provider (subject to some limitations). Our charges to act as Certificate Provider are automatically included within our fixed fees for LPA's. No such requirement exists for a GPA.
The LPA cannot be used until it is registered. The current registration fee is £82 per LPA unless you are entitled to a fee exemption / remission. We recommend immediate registration given the process takes upwards of 3 months with the Court (a process that cannot be circumvented). No formal registration process exists for a GPA.
You can cancel your GPA or LPA (even after it has been registered) provided you have the mental capacity to do so. However, you will then be back to ‘square one’ and have no provision in place should you lose mental capacity.
The only option will be a Deputyship application to the Court of Protection. A GPA will have automatically terminated. This is both an expensive and time-consuming application and will involve the Court in your personal affairs for the remainder of your life.
We recommend that you execute Financial and Health LPA’s
A GPA should only be considered appropriate for:
- A specific one off event – e.g. authority for a family member to complete a property sale on your behalf when you are abroad on holiday / work placement
- As a short-term ‘stop gap’ to give an attorney authority to act from ‘day one’ whilst you are awaiting the formal registration of an LPA with the Court
We DO NOT recommend a GPA for the long term management of your personal affairs as it does not extend to Health issues and automatically terminates upon your loss of mental capacity – the very point in your life when you need a legally appointed attorney to be able to manage your ongoing interests.
Our Private Client Department offers fixed fees. Please refer to Table 2 within our Costs Table.
The following downloads are available:
- Back to Basics Fact Sheet on Lasting Powers of Attorney
- Fact Sheet on Powers of Attorney
- Detailed Guide to Lasting Powers of Attorney
Contact our power of attorney solicitors in Liverpool & London
Our experienced private client solicitors can guide families through the process of preparing, registering and operating Powers of Attorney upon behalf of an individual. call us today on 0151 236 5000 for our Liverpool office or 020 8209 0166 for our London office or complete our online contact form for more information.