It can be uncomfortable to consider the possibility of being unable to make decisions about your own finances and personal welfare, however, it is important to make the necessary arrangements so that your affairs are in the hands of someone you trust.
This is where a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) comes in. This is a legally binding document that empowers you to appoint someone to make decisions on your behalf when you are no longer able to do so.
In this blog, we will delve into the benefits of a lasting power of attorney and why you should consider setting one up.
1. Prepare for the unexpected
Accidents and life-changing medical diagnoses can happen to anyone at any time.
Whether it is a temporary situation such as hospitalisation which requires someone to assist with everyday tasks and bills, or you have recently been diagnosed with a progressive condition such as Alzheimer’s disease and need to ensure your assets are protected in the future – one of the main benefits of a Lasting Power of Attorney agreement is knowing that your financial affairs and welfare are covered.
2. Nominate someone you trust
A common misconception is that immediate family members automatically have the right to handle your personal affairs once you’re no longer able. However, this is not the case.
If an LPA is not arranged and your health declines, the Court of Protection will authorise a deputy who will make decisions regarding your affairs.
An LPA empowers you to place your future care in the hands of a loved one and prevent any legal issues related to your care down the line.
3. Protect your financial assets
With an LPA arranged for your property and financial affairs, your chosen attorney can act on your behalf as and when you want them to. You can choose for the LPA to come into effect while you still have the capacity to make your own decisions, or when mental capacity is lost.
For short-term assistance – for example, if you are recovering from an operation – the attorney can support you by making requested withdrawals from the bank if you find yourself unable to, or by monitoring your pension or benefit credits to ensure you’re receiving the correct amount.
In the case of loss of mental capacity, the attorney can act on your behalf to make decisions regarding money, tax and bills as well as managing any property or investment. The attorney is required to act in your best interest and manage the assets as intended.
4. Make arrangements for your welfare
By appointing a health and welfare attorney, you will have more control over decisions regarding your medical treatment and personal well-being.
This type of LPA gives the chosen attorney the power to make decisions regarding:
- Where you will live, including care home options
- Your day-to-day care and allowance
- Where and when you receive medical care
- Life-sustaining treatment
The chosen person must act in accordance with the conditions placed within the LPA so you’ll have the final say in what kind of medical care you wish to receive and how you’ll be treated.
5. Minimise potential conflicts
Thinking about a future where you have limited capacity may be difficult, but it is vital to ensure that you and your loved ones are confident about how to handle your personal affairs if you no longer can.
Appointing an attorney via LPA can help minimise family conflict and provide clarity regarding your wishes during an already challenging time.
Create a beneficial LPA with Peter Ross
At Peter Ross, we provide clear and concise advice to ensure your LPA reflects your wishes and is legally sound.
Ready to start planning your future? Get in touch with our team today!