The coronavirus pandemic is unprecedented and is causing many of us to feel uncertain about what the future holds – and is a reason more individuals are deciding to create Lasting Powers of Attorney.
What Is A Lasting Power Of Attorney?
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a document that legally lets you appoint someone to be your attorney and to make decisions on your behalf when you’re no longer able to do so yourself.
If you become mentally unable to make personal or financial decisions then you need an attorney to make them for you.
Usually LPAs are used by elderly and vulnerable individuals, but the coronavirus epidemic has resulted in many more people creating LPAs because of the worry of being incapacitated by the virus.
What Types Of LPAs Are There?
There are two types of LPAs that can be made:
- Property and Financial Affairs
This type of LPA covers decisions relating to property and finance, such as buying and selling houses, investing, and receiving income. Your chosen attorney can help you whilst you still have mental capacity and will only act on your behalf when you lose mental capacity to make decisions for yourself.
- Health and Welfare
This LPA covers decisions such as your medical care, where you live, the food you eat, and your social activities. Your chosen attorney cannot act on your behalf until you are no longer able to make decisions due to a loss of mental capacity, which may be caused by illness, being in a coma, or dementia.
How Do You Choose An Attorney?
It is up to you who you appoint as your attorney, provided you are mentally capable at the time of creating an LPA.
As a guide, you will likely choose an attorney based along the following lines:
- He or she is right for your needs
- The number of attorneys is personal, but most people choose between 1 and 4
- You trust him or her to make decisions on your behalf and he or she is able to carry out the role
- Your chosen person agrees to be your attorney – after all, attorneys are subject to the law regarding LPAs as well as any restrictions you place upon them
Can You Create an LPA During The Pandemic?
Yes, you can – the Government has issued guidelines on how to prepare and register an LPA during the coronavirus outbreak.
- The LPA must be signed by all parties and all signatures must be witnessed by an independent person
- A certificate provider, who ensures you know what the LPA is and that you haven’t been pressured into creating it, also needs to sign the LPA
How We Can Help You Make A Lasting Power Of Attorney
We are here to help guide you through the process of creating a Lasting Power of Attorney, and will ensure you are able to complete your LPA efficiently, accurately, and safely. We will make sure everyone is able to sign the LPA and adhere to the current social distancing rules.
In these changeable times, an LPA provides the certainty and peace of mind many people want and need.
Our specialist solicitors will advise you on every aspect of Lasting Powers of Attorney and ensure you create one that is right for you and your loved ones.