What is a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)?
It is a legal document that gives another person (Attorney) who has to be over 18 years old, the authority to make certain decisions on behalf of the person making the LPA if they become unable to make these decisions themselves.

Why would I need to make a Power of Attorney?
It can be reassuring to know that you have things in place so that if at any time in the future you do lose the ability to make decisions for yourself, then the person you want to do this for you, is able to do so.  If you don’t have an LPA in place and this situation arises then a Deputy would probably need to be appointed – this would be very expensive and would not necessarily be the person you would wish to deal with your affairs.

Having an LPA in place will make things easier for your family and friends in future, if you do lose the ability to make decisions for yourself.  You may find you never have to use your LPA, but this is a better position to be in, than to find your family need one for you and there is not one in place.

Is there more than one type of LPA?
Yes, there is an LPA that covers your finances and property, and one that covers your health and welfare. You can choose to have just one type of LPA completed, or both types.  You can also have the same person/s to be your Attorney/s or can appoint different people for each LPA.

The LPA for Health and Welfare allows your Attorney to make decisions on your behalf about your health and welfare if you are not able to make these decisions yourself.  This can include where your live for example, or your day to day care.

The LPA for Property and Financial will allow your Attorney to handle your day to day finances and also make decisions about any investments, savings etc you may have.  

Can the LPA be used if I still have ability to make my own decisions?
Your Attorneys will only be able to use the LPA if you are not able to make decisions for yourself, or if you can make decisions yourself and you give them permission to use it on your behalf.  At no time are they able to use the LPA against your will when you still have the mental capacity to make decisions for yourself.
Any decision that is made by your Attorney has to be for your benefit and not for self gain.

Who would I choose to be my Attorney or Attorneys?

This is obviously completely up to you, but generally people will choose members of their families that they trust. It could be your children, or your husband or wife, or even a close friend. It is always a good idea to talk to your proposed Attorney first and check that they are happy to take on the responsibility.

Can I still make an LPA if I have been diagnosed with early stage dementia?
Yes, as long as you still have mental capacity. You must be able to understand the form and what it is you are signing.  We always recommend that anyone with this diagnosis, or with any type of memory loss, seriously considers making an LPA.  If mental capacity becomes an issue then it will no longer be possible to do this.

We have information booklets in the office which help explain Lasting Powers of Attorney in more detail and you are welcome to pop into our office in Dibden Purlieu and collect one, or if you prefer you can ring our Information and Advice manager, Jane on 023 80841199 and have a chat with her, and she can answer any question you may have.

You are more than welcome to make an appointment to call and see her if this would suit you better.

We are able to complete the forms for you so they are ready to be registered with the Court of Protection, but we are not able to give legal advice.  We do request a donation for this service.

Supporting local older people, their families, friends and carers                                                    
Community Web Kit provided free by BT