Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs

Appoint a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs and ensure that your estate and finances are in good hands, no matter what. An LPA for Property and Financial Affairs ensures that these decisions can be made by somebody you can trust should you no longer be able to make them for yourself.

What Does a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs Mean?

Sometimes referred to as a Finance Power of Attorney, a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs allows you to appoint somebody you trust to manage affairs concerning your finances and property on your behalf. Your LPA is on hand to protect your estate should the need ever arise and if you, for whatever reason, are no longer able to make important decisions for yourself.

One of the main reasons that a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs can be useful is that getting access to somebody’s finances (in the event that they become incapacitated or ill) can be a highly complex and protracted process. This can make things extremely difficult for a spouse, partner, or children to pay bills or access cash on your behalf.

The authority of a Lasting Power of Attorney only comes into force should it be required — and could last for months or even years — until such a time as you are able to take over the reins again. Even once you are fit and able to make decisions for yourself again, your LPA will remain in place should they be needed again.

The authority afforded to a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs allows them to take responsibility and make important decisions on a range of issues, including:

  • Debts
  • Taxes
  • Bills
  • Pensions
  • Welfare benefits or tax credits
  • Buying or selling property or investments

However, should you wish, you are able to dictate only specific duties to your LPA. For example, if you don’t want to give them total power over all of your property and financial affairs, you can specify that they only are able to make decisions over certain things.

Appoint Your LPA Today

If you want the person making the decisions for you down the line to be somebody you can trust, a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs could be the perfect solution. Get in touch today.

LPA Property and Financial Affairs Guide

If you wish to appoint an LPA to take responsibility for important decisions regarding your finances and property, you must first be able to prove that you have full mental capacity. Important steps in the appointment include selecting an appropriate Power of Attorney, getting the required signatures, and officially registering them with the Office of the Public Guardian.

The process of setting up a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs includes:

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1. Selecting an Appropriate Attorney

Arguably the most important step in the process of appointing an LPA for Property and Financial Affairs is selecting the right attorney. Commonly, the role will be given to one of the following parties:

  • Spouses
  • Partners
  • Members of your family
  • Close friends
  • Professionals such as solicitors

In addition to selecting your LPA, it is important if you want more than one Power of Attorney, that you make it clear exactly how you wish them to act (jointly, severally, or both)

Attorneys acting jointly must work together and co-operate on all matters, severally means that your LPA’s may act independently, and jointly and severally mean that they may decide whether to act together or separately. This is common if different attorneys have unique expertise or live nearby.

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2. Identify Who ‘Needs to be Told’

The early stages of the process of you appointing a Lasting Power of Attorney may also include compiling a list of people who ‘need to be told’ of your intentions to register a dedicated LPA for Property and Financial Affairs. Commonly, the people who may ‘need to be told’ are spouses, children, close family or other loved ones. However, it is important to remember that you are under no obligation to tell anybody of your intentions, as relatives have no legal right to be informed.

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3. Get the Necessary Signatures

Before sending the required forms on, they must be signed by all parties involved. People who are required to sign the forms include:

  • The donor: The person who is making the Power of Attorney
  • Certificate Providers: Somebody who is able to supply official testimony that the donor has capacity to appoint an LPA
  • Attorney(s): Anybody you wish to appoint to the position must supply their written signature to be considered
Advanced-directive

4. Send Necessary Payment and Documents on to the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG)

All official Power of Attorney documentation, in order to be considered, must be signed and sent to the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG), including necessary payments. The required fee to register an LPA with the OPG is £82.

It may be worth considering that the donor may be eligible for full or partial payment exemption. The former applies if the donor is eligible for financial benefits, while the latter may be considered if their income (pre-tax) is under £12,000 per year.

It will usually take between 8 and 10 weeks to register a Lasting Power of Attorney. However, during particularly busy periods the waiting time may be significantly longer.

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5. Registration of Your Power of Attorney

It generally takes between 8 and 10 weeks from sending the forms to the OPG for your Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs to be officially appointed. However, this timeframe may be extended if there are any delays at the OPG, for example during busy times of the year or if there are any complications with your case.

Once the OPG has verified all documentation, a stamped copy will be returned to the sender,which shows that your application has been accepted. Any LPA documentations without these stamps are deemed invalid and, therefore, any actions undertaken by a Power of Attorney in this scenario are seen as illegitimate.

It is important that you keep this stamped document safe as it acts as proof that your LPA Property and Financial Affair appointment was legitimate and verified. Therefore, it may be worth considering a secure document storage services to ensure your forms are kept safe should they be needed.

Why do I Need an LPA for Property and Financial Affairs?

While we would all like to be capable of always making key decisions for ourselves, it’s possible that at some point in time you will, even temporarily, be incapable. If you were to become unable to make decisions regarding your property and financial affairs, you’ll want somebody in your corner that you can trust, and who knows what you want.

Without having an LPA in place, should you ever be unable to express your decisions, the situation could quickly become highly complicated and stressful for your loved ones. This is because the people you might prefer to handle your affairs and important decisions do not have an automatic legal right to do so.

These people, usually partners or children, are forced to go through the often lengthy and costly process of applying for a Deputyship Order if they want to gain authority over your affairs. Whereas if you had an LPA in place prior to needing one, they would automatically and immediately gain the authority to make these important decisions.

Therefore it’s vital that you don’t procrastinate. Speak to a solicitor as soon as possible and get the ball rolling to appoint a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs today.

Make Your Lasting Power of Attorney Today

Make sure that your wishes can be followed, and your best interests are considered at all times — no matter what the future holds. Contact a member of our team today to learn more about the process and to find out what a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs can do for you.

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    Why Not Consider a Health and Welfare Power of Attorney?

    The appeal of an LPA for Property and Financial Affairs is clear if you want important bills and financial commitments to be sorted if you’re unable. However, were you aware that you can also appoint somebody to make important decisions regarding your health and welfare?

    Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Welfare

    Where an LPA for Property and Financial Affairs will make decisions regarding your finances, a power of attorney for health and welfare will be responsible for important decisions regarding your general well being. These two attorneys are able to operate at the same time.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    Who Should I Choose to be my LPA for Property and Financial Affairs?

    The most common choice for a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs would be your partner, a family member, a child, or a friend. However, you are able to choose anybody to be your attorney, as long as they are over the age of 18. Should you wish, you can even appoint a solicitor to the role.

    It’s vital that your chosen attorney is somebody that you can trust, somebody that you believe will act entirely in line with your wishes and preferences. It’s also important to remember that your attorney will likely be required to make some very difficult decisions on your behalf, so make sure you select somebody who will be able to handle the burden and understands the importance of the position.

    Can I Have More Than One Attorney?

    Yes, there is no limit to the number of attorneys you can have acting on your behalf. Sometimes, having more than one attorney is even useful because it means that the burden of making difficult decisions can be shared among a group of people rather than falling to one person alone.

    You can also nominate replacement attorneys who have the power to step in should any of your attorneys die. However, while you are, in theory, able to name as many attorneys as you like, the more you have operating at any given time, the more complicated the decision making process can become. That is why we recommend that four attorneys should be considered the maximum.

    Who do I need to notify when I make a Property and Financial Affairs LPA?

    You are not obligated to notify anybody that you are intending on making an LPA. However, you do have the option to notify up to five people (usually a spouse or family member). These parties will all be sent official letters detailing your intentions, and will in turn have up to three weeks to raise any objections.