Where can I get a Lasting Power of Attorney?
But first, let's ask ourselves, what is an LPA and where do I get one?
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document that an individual can put into power, as long as they still have the ability to make their own choices and decisions, that protects them should they lose mental capacity.
There are two types of LPAs, a 'Property and Financial Affairs LPA' and a 'Health and Welfare LPA'.
A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legal document that allows someone to appoint someone to make certain decisions on their behalf, this person is called an Attorney.
Property and Financial Affairs LPA
A Property and Financial Affairs LPA allows the attorney to deal with the financial happenings such as your bank account and investments, your bills and buying and selling your land.
As dementia and Alzheimer's are affecting people more frequently, an LPA is becoming more necessary. If mental capacity is lost it makes it extremely difficult to maintain your own finances. If your family want to help by taking control and there is no LPA in place they will have to apply to the Court of Protection to get control. This can be a very costly and lengthy task. Joint bank accounts and building societies can be affected if one of the account holders was to lose mental capacity, this could restrict an account holder making withdrawals of the funds which could be needed for daily financial activities such as bills or mortgage payments. If an LPA was already in place then this would remove a massive burden on both yourself and the family.
Health and Welfare LPA
The second type of Lasting Power of Attorney is a Health and Welfare LPA. This gives your chosen attorney the ability to make medical decisions and even about where someone can live depending on their condition. Like a Financial LPA, this type of attorney can only step in if you lose the capacity to make decisions for yourself. During the time that you have mental capacity no one can make any decisions for you unless you give them permission to do so.
A Health and Welfare attorney can make decisions for you such as; whether to go ahead with medication, or whether to continue with or refuse life-sustaining treatment, for example resuscitation, depending if you have given your attorney the right to make this choice. An attorney can also decide where the best place for you to live will be, that being in your own home or residential care.
Why have an LPA?
Having an LPA is the best way to ensure that your wishes are being carried out by someone you trust. If you do not have an LPA in place then it may result in a stranger making these decisions for you, your wishes may not be able to be taken into account. Social services may also have to become involved in deciding where it is best for you to live. Medical treatment may be also be given to you against your wishes such as resuscitation.
It is often difficult for people to think about the deterioration of their mental state and to discuss this with their loved ones. We have consultants on hand to visit you in the comfort of your own home who can talk to you about your current LPA needs and recommend which services will meet them.
What is the next step?
The next step is simple, contact The Will Associates on 0800 9500 700 and we can provide a free and confidential consultation in your own home at a time that is convenient for you.