What is an LPA? Should I have one?

257937032_14920719b3

Photo Credit: adwriter via Compfight cc

An LPA is short for a Lasting Power of Attorney. Many people do not understand what these are and why it is important to have one. LPA’s are often associated with getting older and retired people; why bother sorting it now and paying out when there is plenty of time to worry about this in the future? However, this is the problem that nearly all people face. Leaving it until you are older is not the correct thing to do. Things can be left too late, which leaves you and your loved ones in a financial muddle.

LPA’s are handy for the elderly yes, but situations arise all throughout life that may results in affairs having to be dealt with quickly and efficiently, which LPA’s ensure. Another commonly forgotten element of having an LPA is that to take one out the person must be of sound mind, and be within the mental state to do so.

Leaving it too late makes things a lot more costly, especially if you are not of sound mind, as an application to the Court of Protection would then have to be applied for by your family. By sorting an LPA sooner rather than later it allows you to plan in advance what decisions you want to be made before someone else has to make them, and you can chose someone you trust to do these for you yourself.

There are two types of LPA. These are the Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney and the Property and Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney.

The Health and Welfare LPA allows someone to look after daily needs such as eating, dressing and washing. These people, if authorised by you, can also make important decisions regarding your life care rather than just the health officials. This type of LPA must be registered before it can come into play if you become mentally incapable.

The Property and Financial Affairs LPA allows your chosen person to make decisions like buying or selling property and assets of yours, paying bills and being in charge of your bank accounts. This can be used as soon as it is registered, and you can deal with your affairs yourself at the same time.

Emma Fuller is head of the private client team at EHL; our solicitors in Loughborough are experts in their fields and dedicated to quality client care. If you would like to find out more about our solicitors in Loughborough please contact us.

Keep up to date with our daily blogs through the Edward Hands & Lewis mobile app, just search Edward Hands on the iPhone or Android store to download our app for free.