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Lasting Power of Attorney

It is a sad fact that increased life expectancy brings with it a growing risk of dementia in later life. People who have lost their mental capacity are no longer able to make important decisions concerning their financial affairs or matters relating to their health and personal welfare. Family members wishing to give assistance may have to apply to the Court of Protection on each separate occasion, and this could prove very expensive. It is therefore strongly recommended that every adult should take advantage of Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) while they still can.

There are two types of LPA; the first deals with Property & Financial Affairs: This allows the the Attorney(s), (the person(s) appointed by the Donor), to make decisions in respect of the following:

Paying bills, including the mortgage, rent and household expenses;

Buying or selling the Donor's home;

Opening, closing or operating any bank, building society or other account;

Receiving any income, inheritance or other entitlement on behalf of the Donor;

Dealing with the Donor's tax affairs;

Insuring, maintaining and repairing the Donor's property;

Investing the Donor's savings;

Making limited gifts on the Donor's behalf;

Paying for private medical care, residential care or nursing home fees out of the Donor's funds;

- always provided that the Attorney(s) act in the Donor's best interests.

The second type of LPA is concerned with Health and Welfare, and in particular, the following aspects, but only when the Donor is unable to act for himself or herself:

Decisions regarding treatment and care;

Where the Donor should live and with whom;

Who may visit and who is excluded;

Arranging holidays and outings;

Making end-of-life decisions.

Is LPA really necessary? Well, look at it this way: you insure your house and your car - why would you think twice about insuring your mental health? 

Lasting Power of Attorney is just that: insurance against loss of your faculties.