POWERS OF ATTORNEY
Who would you trust to look after your affairs if you suffered a loss of capacity?
You will need a Lasting Power of Attorney if you want it to be your choice.
We are now living longer than ever before and as a consequence, the likelihood of us losing capacity at some point whether through dementia, illness or accident is far more prevalent.
It is often assumed that if we were unable to look after our own affairs that those closest to us would simply take over and make decisions about our finances and health care.
Sadly, without LPAs in place, the reality is considerably more complicated and the burden placed on loved ones can be physically and emotionally devastating.
If we are considered to have lost capacity, Social Services will consider us to be vulnerable and they have a duty to inform financial institutions.
Financial Institutions such as your Bank, Building Society and Insurers have a fiduciary responsibility to protect vulnerable clients. They do this by freezing all your assets preventing any access to funds, making any changes or the ability to renew your insurances.
The British Banking Association
“If you are the joint account holder and the other joint account holder becomes mentally incapable, you do not automatically have the right to access the account unless you have a Lasting Power of Attorney, Enduring Power of Attorney or an order from the Court of Protection.”
How Your Finances Would Be Affected
If you are considered to have lost capacity and don’t have an LPA, you and those closest to you would not be able to gain access, take action or make decisions in relation to any of your financial matters including:
Current & savings accounts.
Insurances (such as life & buildings & contents).
Payment of bills.
Collecting pension payments.
Making mortgage payments.
The Court of Protection would appoint a Court Deputy to look after your financial affairs and make decisions on your behalf.
This will typically be someone that you have never met and their responsibility is only to you and your welfare. They will not be able to take care of those who rely on you or who share your assets.
Furthermore, fees are charged for a Court Deputy, which are often significant.
Medical & Welfare Decisions
Without LPAs in place, those closest to you do not have the right to make decisions about your medical treatment and welfare, including whether or not you need long term residential care and where that should be.
Lasting Powers of Attorney are made whilst you have full capacity and they set out who it is that you want to look after you and your affairs should you suffer a loss of capacity.
There are two types of Lasting Power of Attorney:
Property & Affairs
Health & Welfare
Having these LPAs in place and registered prior to a loss of capacity will mean that a person, or persons, that you trust to look after you will be able to control your finances and make decisions about your medical treatment and general welfare.
Someone you trust will be able to take over without cost or delay and without the need of a Court Deputy or Deputyship Order.
I am a qualified and accredited Legal Intermediary, here to support you and your case through the legal process.
I have successfully completed examinations and programmes for continual professional development with the Bar Standard Board
Areas of specialism : Wills & Legacy Planning, Trusts, Lasting Power of Attorney and Business Protection and Continuity.
Like most people ‘’ Legacy’’ planning was something we kept deferring as no one wishes to think of not being around anymore. Our pension specialist / advisor the CEO of Financial Options Group Mr Christian Pepper suggested we speak with Caroline as we were implementing our retirement plans. We found Caroline very professional whom explained clearly in understandable language the considerations and planning we should consider for our family and dependents and close friends. Nothing was too much trouble and Caroline was easily contactable at all times to answer any questions that arose . Several home visits were made by Caroline whom demonstrated empathy, understanding of our concerns and excellent knowledge of current legacy rules and regulations .
We would certainly recommend Caroline to anyone as she ‘’ Delivers Service of Excellence ''
We felt at every stage that we were putting our future wishes in the best hands.
Keith and Linda