When is the right time to think about Lasting Powers of Attorney?
The Answer to this question is Right Now!
I often receive calls from concerned family members enquiring about a Lasting Power of Attorney for their mother or father or for their spouse, but as the discussion develops it becomes clear that their family member already has dementia which has progressed too far, and would not have the capacity to enter into a Lasting Power of Attorney.
In this situation, it is too late to act and the only option available is for someone in the family to make an application to the Court of Protection to become a Deputy in order to deal with matters on their behalf. This is a far more complicated, time consuming and costly process.
If you still have capacity, this is the best time to act!
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) should not be seen as something you only set up when you need it. I only buy bread, milk or sugar when I need these items. But setting up an LPA is different. it is more like taking out a form of insurance – something you set up before it is actually needed. You do not buy car insurance after you are involved in an accident or buy buildings insurance after your house has burnt down. It's too late by then. You should view a Lasting Power of Attorney in the same way. Hopefully it will never be required, but it is there when needed.
There are two types of LPA, one which deals with your Property and Financial Affairs, and another which deals with your Health and Care. Whilst the LPA for Health and Care only becomes active once it can be shown that you have lost mental capacity, you can opt to activate the Property and Finance LPA as soon as it has been registered at the Office of the Public Guardian. This means that even if you still have mental capacity to deal with your own financial affairs you can allow your attorney to deal with some of these matters for you.
If you would like some more information about how LPA's work or you would like to book an appointment to begin the process of setting these up, please contact me on 07792 869095 or email me at email@example.com.
People are living longer and more and more people are having to live with the effects of Dementia. So please Act Now!