Court of Protection/Lasting Powers of Attorney
Our Court of Protection/Lasting Powers of Attorney/Care Home Fees team provides specialist advice and help to people who wish to plan ahead and arrange what they would like to happen should they, one day, be unable to make decisions for themselves.
Our team also provides advice about care home fees, providing practicable help and guidance so that costly mistakes are avoided.
A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legally binding document which allows an individual who has capacity and are over the age of 18 to appoint another person to make decisions on their behalf, should they be unable to do so at some point in the future.
If no Lasting Power of Attorney is in place, then it may be necessary to apply to the Court of Protection for a Deputyship application.
Recent work in this area includes:
- Completion of Lasting Power of Attorneys for a couple to include property and affairs and health and welfare.
- Court of Protection application for a Deputyship Order.
Lasting Powers of Attorney
A Lasting Power of Attorney is an entirely different document from a Will. A Will deals with your affairs after you die, whereas a Lasting Power of Attorney or LPA can only be used whilst you are living. A Lasting Power of Attorney allows you to appoint someone to make decisions for you if you cannot make them yourself. A Lasting Power of Attorney does not just make your wishes known, it empowers somebody you trust to make decisions and to act on your behalf based on those wishes if you are no longer able or do not want to. Therefore a Lasting Power of Attorney can prove invaluable in times of long term ill health or following an accident.
There are two types of Lasting Power of Attorney, one known as property and financial affairs and one known as personal welfare Lasting Power of Attorney. The Lasting Power of Attorney for property and financial affairs gives your attorney authority to deal with buying and selling your property, your bills, your bank accounts and your investments. This can be used whilst someone is still capable but physically is unable to deal with their finances and therefore has chosen to delegate to their attorney.
A personal welfare Lasting Power of Attorney covers decisions about health and care and even deciding where someone is to live but can only be used if someone is incapable of dealing with such matters themselves. This Lasting Power of Attorney also gives your attorney the right to accept or deny life sustaining treatment.
If you do not have a Lasting Power of Attorney and you become mentally incapable or are unable to look after your affairs due to physical heath, your relatives may face long delays and expense in order to look after your finances or make decisions about your health and medical treatment. Therefore putting a Lasting Power of Attorney in place now, while you still can and have the capacity to do so, puts you firmly in control of your affairs. You decide who are to be your attorneys, how much authority you want to give to them and whether you want to impose any restrictions on that authority.
By completing a Lasting Power of Attorney you are taking control of your affairs and not leaving it to chance.
Court of Protection
In circumstances where someone does not have a Lasting Power of Attorney or an Enduring Power of Attorney and no longer has the mental capacity required to make important decisions regarding their finances or welfare, loved ones and family members have to apply to the Court of Protection for help. The Court of Protection is the judicial body responsible for making decisions relating to the management of finances and other affairs of those individuals who lack the mental capacity to do so themselves.
The Court of Protection can appoint a family member or a loved one as a deputy to look after an individual’s finances and make decisions about their welfare should they be unable to do so themselves. We can apply to the Court of Protection for a Deputyship Order, we can advise deputy’s about their on going administration work as a deputy and advise about Statutory Wills.
Please contact us should you wish to discuss Court of Protection issues further.