legal faqs from Humphries Kirk Solicitors

Lasting Power of Attorney FAQs

Lasting Power of Attorney FAQs

I have an Enduring Power of Attorney. Do I need to do a Lasting Power of Attorney now?

Enduring Powers of Attorney (EPAs) have been replaced by Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs). They remain valid but it is important to note that they only cover Property and Financial Affairs. You may want to think about making a Health and Welfare LPA to have alongside your existing EPA.


I am married with children, surely my family would be able to look after things for me should anything happen?

Many people make this assumption but there are no guarantees. The only way to ensure your family’s actions, in relation to your affairs are never questioned is to have both Property and financial affairs and health and welfare LPAs in place. This will give them the legal authority to manage your bank accounts and make decisions on your behalf regarding your personal welfare, in the event that you are unable to do so yourself.


Surely I have plenty of time before I need to start worrying about making LPAs?

Whilst LPAs tend to be more popular amongst the older generation there can be many advantages to having them in place when you are younger. Armed Forces families often find it useful to have them in place. It is essential that you have mental capacity when making LPAs so it is better to make them sooner rather than later and you never know when you might need to rely on them.


Who should I choose as my attorneys?

It is essential that you choose someone who you trust to objectively manage your affairs to ensure that decisions are made in your best interests.


Can my attorneys just do what they want?

No. Under the principles contained in the Mental Capacity Act 2005 your attorneys must act in your best interests. They must also ensure that they try to help you make as many of your own decisions as you can.


Do I need replacement attorneys?

Replacement attorneys are not essential. However, depending on your choice of primary attorneys, it may be a good idea to consider having replacement attorneys, particularly if you have only appointed one primary attorney for example.


Is it possible to insist that my attorneys make certain decisions together?

It is entirely possible. However, you need to be careful that you do not unintentionally restrict your attorneys’ authority to make decisions on your behalf. Making decisions jointly can cause problems if one of the attorneys was to be away on holiday for example, at a time when an important decision had to be made.


Who should I choose to be my certificate provider?

A certificate provider is someone who signs the LPA documents to confirm that you fully understand the content and implications of the LPAs. You can choose someone who has known you for over 2 years (and is more than just an acquaintance) or a professional certificate provider such as your solicitor or GP. This is a vital role to play in the making of your LPAs and if anyone ever challenged your LPAs your certificate provider must be prepared to explain how they formed their opinion. For this reason we would strongly recommend using a professional certificate provider.


Will there be a charge for acting as my certificate provider?

If we prepare your LPAs for you and are in a position to act as your certificate provider there will be no separate fee for this service. Your GP will often charge for acting as your certificate provider.


Why do LPAs need to be registered?

Your LPAs are registered with the Office of the Public Guardian who maintain a list of registered LPAs with details of the donor (person making the LPAs) and the attorneys. This allows them to supervise attorneys where required.


Do I need to register my LPAs straight away?

No, some people choose to prepare them now with the intention of registering them only if this becomes necessary. However, registration can take time (up to 4 months). Therefore, if your LPAs are needed in an emergency and are unregistered your attorneys will have to wait before they can act for you.


Is there a court fee for registering LPAs?

Yes, currently the court fee is £82 per LPA document which is registered with the Office of the Public Guardian. However, depending on your personal circumstances you may be eligible for a fee exemption or remission.


Why does someone need to be notified when I register my LPAs?

This is a safeguarding measure put in place to protect people when making LPAs. It allows the person you have chosen to be notified to object to the registration of your LPAs on various grounds. It is vital that you choose someone who cares about you enough to contact the Office of the Public Guardian at the time of registration, should they have concerns such as over your choice of attorneys.


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