What is a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPOA)?
An LPOA is a document that allows an individual (the donor) to appoint people they trust (attorneys) to handle their affairs on their behalf if they were to ever lose the mental or physical capacity.
The different types of LPOA documents and their functions
- Property/Financial affairs
This LPOA allows one to name people they trust to deal with anything related to their property and financial affairs. On the financial side of things, Attorneys named on this document can deal with things like banking, paying bills, pensions, investments and anything else related to the Donors finances.
For the property element of this LPOA, the attorneys can deal with anything related to the Donors property/properties. This includes paying bills, arranging repairs or maintenance, renting out the property for the Donor and anything else that may be required relating to the property/properties.
- Health and Welfare
This document allows appointed attorneys to deal with the Donors health and welfare requirements. This could range from deciding where the Donor is cared for, who they are cared for by and have involvement in related decisions.
The Donor could also decide to give their attorneys the power to make decisions regards life-sustaining treatments. For this to work correctly, the attorney(s) must know what the Donor would have wanted to happen to them in this scenario.
- Business LPOA
This is a document that is potentially critical for any business owner. If a business owner were to ever lose the mental or physical capacity their business could suffer irreparable consequences due to no-one being able to run the day-to-day functions of the business.
This LPOA would allow the attorneys to carry out the operations of the business without any delay which could be the difference between the business continuing and ceasing to exist.
Who can have an LPOA?
Anyone over the age of 18 years can have LPOA’s prepared and appoint the people they trust to take over their affairs if that need arose.
These documents can be amended prior to registration and often are by Donors who have changes in circumstances that affect who their appointed attorneys are.
Many conscientious business owners already have LPOA documents in place to ensure their businesses won’t suffer as a consequence of them suffering mental or physical incapacity.
When does the LPOA come into affect?
An LPOA can come into effect as soon as it has been registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG). However, it can also be arranged that an LPOA is only in affect once the Donor has lost the mental capacity to an extent they can no longer deal with their affairs. The decision in this respect is made by the Donor during the instruction of an LPOA.
Who can be appointed as an attorney?
Any individual that has attained the age of 18 years old can be appointed an attorney. Attorneys are usually family members of the Donor or very close friends. The attorney does not have to live in the country however, it is advisable to name attorneys that are practical in terms of location.
A solicitor or other professional attorneys can also be named if that was a requirement due to the Donor not having any family or friends that could act on their behalf.
If you have any questions or queries around Lasting Power of Attorney documents then get in touch with the experts at RRK Legal. We are based in Birmingham and serve clients all over the West Midlands, Worcestershire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire and beyond!
If you have been quoted for LPOA documents in the past, you will be very pleasantly surprised with our fees for this service!