When is a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) useful?
In relation to an LPA for health and welfare, this only takes effect if you lose mental capacity. However, the LPA for property and financial affairs, can take effect immediately on registration or just when you lose mental capacity. If you select for it to take effect immediately on registration, the attorneys, with your consent, can start assisting you with your financial affairs as soon as the LPA is registered. You may wish for your attorneys to assist you immediately if you, for instance, have a physical health condition and cannot go to your bank.
- Manage your bank and savings accounts
- Make or sell investments
- Pay your bills
- Buy or sell a property on your behalf.
Make decisions about your medical treatment including life sustaining treatment
Decide where you live (e.g., if you needed to move into a care home)
Make decisions about your day-to-day care (e.g., your diet and daily routine).
If I complete the LPA forms now, does it mean that I will no longer be able to make decisions for myself?
No. As long as you have mental capacity, you retain control, and you can always revoke the LPA.
Is a health and welfare LPA necessary?
It is necessary if you would prefer someone you choose to make the decisions about your health and welfare in accordance with your wishes if you do not have the mental capacity to make those decisions for yourself. Otherwise, the decisions may be left to the medical or social care professionals dealing with you and they do not necessarily have to consult your family on your needs.
No. As long as you have mental capacity, you retain control and you can always revoke the power of attorney. With a health and welfare Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA), your attorney cannot make decisions for you unless you have lost mental capacity. With a property and financial affairs LPA, your attorney can make decisions for you as soon as it is registered if you choose.
If you want to choose someone to make decisions on your health and welfare when you cannot, then yes. That way, you can pick someone you trust and explain to them any preferences you have so that if the day comes when you cannot make those decisions yourself, they have the legal authority to do so on your behalf.