Powers of Attorney & Court of Protection
The role of the attorney
By signing LPAs for your "Property and Financial Affairs" and "Health and Welfare" you are giving your Attorney full power over your home, your money and decisions about your healthcare and medical treatment.
What are the duties of my attorney?
- To act in your best interests
- To make only those decisions the LPA gives the attorney authority to make
- Not to take advantage of their position or to benefit themselves unlawfully
- To respect your confidentiality
Your attorney has a number of duties which are set down in law. These include the following:
Your attorney must consult you about decisions when appropriaye to do so, and should help you make decisions for yourself and support you. Where there are a number of choices they must discuss all the options with you and help you to make the decision. If you are unable to make the decision, your attorney can make it on your behalf.
Commencement of the Lasting Powers of Attorney
A Property and Financial Affairs LPA can be used even though you still have the capacity to manage your own affairs. Alternatively you may wish to restrict it so that it can only be used if you lose that capacity. A Health and Welfare LPA can only be used if you have become mentally incapable of making decisions about your own health and welfare.
The power of a Property and Financial Affairs LPA
By signing a Property and Financial Affairs LPA, you are giving your attorney full power over your home, your money and any other property. If you want your attorney to handle these things for you if you become mentally incapable, you are not likely to be in a position to check what they are doing. You should therefore choose your attorney carefully. You may like to consider how skilled they are at handling money and investment matters, and whether you think they are trustworthy enough to look after your own affairs if you are not able to do so. This may include deciding how your money should be used to look after you and provide for your needs.
The power of a Health and Welfare LPA
If you set up a Health and Welfare LPA, your attorney will only be able to act for you if you become mentally incapacitated. In such circumstances your attorney will be able to make decisions about all aspects of your social welfare, including where you live or with whom you have contact, your healthcare and medical treatment. It is therefore important that you choose someone you know well and someone you trust to make these decisions on your behalf.
You can appoint the same attorney or attorneys to act under both types of LPA or you can choose different attorneys.