Many people start to consider having Lasting Powers of Attorney (or LPAs) created as they get older, and they want to ensure that their wishes – for their health and personal finances – will be carried out, no matter what happens to them.
There is no knowing when physical or mental injury and incapacity could occur, and there is often little to no warning. Ensuring that your business affairs or private affairs have been carefully considered and planned for will ensure that you will have the final say in what happens. A Lasting Power of Attorney is a document where you have appointed a trusted individual to make decisions for you should you be incapacitated.
It is vital that anyone in business consider who would manage their business affairs if they are incapacitated, to manage that business for example paying invoices, managing staff, purchasing stock, and maintaining the business as usual.
You should also indicate who you would like to manage your personal finances – and this can be a different person. These mechanisms will ensure that your finances are protected, and those who depend on them are not left vulnerable.
Health and Welfare
Whether through an accident, dementia, or other illness, the time may come when you are not able to make key decisions about your healthcare, treatment plans, and quality of life. You should ensure that a person you trust completely, someone who knows your opinions on issues such as resuscitation and tube feeding, so that should the time come, they will not be concerned about whether they are making decisions that you would be comfortable with. They will already know.
What if I don’t have a Lasting Power of Attorney in place?
Without a LPA in place, if an incident should occur that incapacitates you then concerned individuals will need to make an application to the Court of Protection, so that a Deputy can be appointed. That is the person who can act in a similar way to an LPA, but this court process could take a long time, and during that time essential financial or health decisions may need to be made. It could also be difficult for dependents to access bank accounts or savings.
You need to decide whether you are happy for someone else to make any daily or difficult decisions on your behalf, should you become incapacitated. If you are, and you have someone in mind, then you should ensure that they have the power to do that by creating a Lasting Power of Attorney. Get in touch with our team who can help you through the process to ensure that your opinions always matter, no matter whether you can communicate them or not.