You do not have to be old to have an LPA?
It’s a fact that people are living longer and with an increasingly elderly population there will naturally be a greater number of people with dementia, a condition that carries with it a number of debilitating brain disorders.
It is clearly essential to plan for the future as with many cases of dementia the person loses mental capacity meaning they can no longer make their own decisions. In these cases the most appropriate solution is to prepare a Lasting Power of Attorney.
There are two types of LPA: - one that deals with property and finances, and one that deals with health and care decisions. By preparing one or indeed both you empower trusted attorneys to make the best decisions on your behalf.
If however a person has not had the foresight or opportunity to prepare an LPA before losing mental capacity then the situation is more problematical, expensive and time consuming as an application will have to be made by an interested third party to the Court of Protection for a Deputyship order.
LPAs should however not be simply a consideration for elderly people, as there are many good reasons why younger people should make an LPA.
You need to the a minute to consider your own personal circumstances and think about what would happen if you were incapacitated even for a short period of time: would your spouse or partner be able to access your bank accounts to pay for necessary bills, deal with insurance companies on your behalf, sell a jointly owned house, change mortgage providers, have the standing to question your medical treatment etc?
Also, if you own or have an interest in a business special consideration should be given to preparing an LPA. It is vital that your and or any other business partners have this provision in place to allow the continued smooth running of the business in the event that you (or they) are temporarily or permanently incapacitated.
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Please note that the information and opinions contained in this article are not intended to be comprehensive, nor to provide legal advice. No responsibility for its accuracy or correctness is assumed by Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers Ltd or any of its members or employees. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking, or refraining from taking, any action as a result of this article.
This blog was posted some time ago and its contents may now be out of date. For the latest legal position relating to these issues, get in touch with the author - or make an enquiry now.