Lasting Powers of Attorney & Deputyship Applications
Whilst most people are aware of the dangers of not making a Will, here at GHW Solicitors we believe that many people are unaware of the problems that arise should someone lose mental capacity and therefore be unable to make their own day-to-day decisions.
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a document by which you grant someone the power to make decisions on your behalf at a time when you may no longer be able to do so yourself, whether through illness, injury or any other condition which might affect your capacity. There are two types of LPA. There is one for Property and Financial Affairs, and another covering Health and Welfare.
You may be thinking “this doesn’t affect us, we’re perfectly well”. This is a common misunderstanding. The key thing to remember is that you can only set up an LPA when you have mental capacity. Once you’ve lost capacity, it is too late.
If you do not have an LPA in place and you become unable to deal with your affairs yourself, then a relative or other appropriate representative would have to make an application to the Court of Protection to be appointed to make decisions on your behalf as your “Deputy”.
Court of Protection Deputyship
In an ideal world everyone would set up Lasting Powers of Attorney whilst they still have mental capacity. However, this often does not happen and results in family or friends having to apply to the Court of Protection to become a deputy to help manage someone’s finances or welfare.
There are two types of Deputyship
- Financial Deputy: looks after the persons property and finances
- Health and Welfare Deputy: looks after medical matters, welfare issues such as where you live, who you see etc. This is more difficult to obtain than the financial one.
You can apply to be just one type of deputy or both. If you’re appointed, you’ll get a court order saying what you can and can’t do.
To apply you must check that you meet the requirements to be a deputy, send the application forms to the Court of Protection and pay an application fee. GHW Solicitors can assist in all aspects of Deputyships so please contact us to discuss your needs in more detail.