Hill Dickinson can help clients to make provision for a time when they or a relative are no longer capable of managing their own affairs.
We specialise in advising clients on safeguarding their future, and can help them to put in place the best strategy to ensure their affairs are properly dealt with.
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a document which one person (the donor) uses to authorise a person they trust (their attorney) to act on their behalf. It must be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian before it can be used, and can include detailed guidance as to how the donor wishes their affairs to be administered. We can advise you which type of LPA is most appropriate for the client's circumstances.
There are two types of LPA:
- Property and Affairs LPA – allows an attorney to make decisions and act on the donor’s behalf in relation to property and other financial affairs. Once registered, an attorney could act for the donor immediately, if for example the donor plans to be abroad for an extended period.
- Personal Welfare LPA – allows the attorney to make decisions about the donor’s personal welfare once they have lost mental capacity. This includes the ability to consent or refuse medical treatment and to decide where the donor should live. The Personal Welfare LPA allows attorneys to make positive decisions about healthcare (as opposed to a Living Will, which can only list the types of treatment a person would not wish to receive).
We also act for clients where no Power of Attorney has been made. Here, an application to the Court of Protection is required for someone to be appointed as a Deputy to administer a person’s affairs and/or make healthcare decisions on his or her behalf. This can be a lengthy process.
As a Deputy is appointed by the court and not by the individual, disputes may arise. We have many years’ experience of dealing with families in these difficult circumstances, and can often find a way of resolving issues sensitively.