Lasting power of attorney
Who takes care of a loved one’s affairs when they can no longer do it for themselves?
It is helpful for us to know who has the authority to make decisions about our residents’ finances and property when they can no longer do it for themselves.
Of course, if they are able and competent, there is no reason why they should not continue to do it for themselves, but it is always advisable to have arrangements in place for when that is no longer the case.
The usual method is for the elderly person to appoint somebody they trust, whether that be a friend or relative, to have Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA).
Here at Aveley Lodge, we are used to working with families who have Lasting Powers of Attorney in place to support their loved ones. We ensure all the necessary paperwork we hold, reflects a resident’s wishes and that this is communicated at the appropriate times to other external agencies should the need arise. All we require is a copy of the original Power of Attorney paperwork to hold on file as proof.
Arranging LPA is a formal legal process and should be done while the “donor” (that is, the elderly person) is mentally competent. This is to ensure that the arrangement has been carried out with their consent and full knowledge given the powers and responsibilities conferred on the appointee, who must also be mentally competent.
There are two types of LPA and it is possible to choose to have either or both:
- health and welfare. This allows the appointed LPA to make decisions about the donor’s daily routine, medical care, whether or not to move into a home and about any life-sustaining treatment.
- property and financial affairs. This allows the appointed LPA to manage the donor’s bank or building society accounts, pay their bills, collect their benefits and if necessary to sell their home.
As of March 2018, it costs £82 to register the arrangement, although it is possible to apply for exemption or a reduction if the donor qualifies, usually because they are receiving means-tested benefits. If the donor’s income before tax is less than £12,000 a year, you’ll only have to pay half – this is known as a ‘50% remission’.
The process of registering a LPA appointee is administered by the Office of the Public Guardian. Its representatives can guide you through the process, answer questions and help with the paperwork. For further information please visit www.gov.uk/power-of-attorney