Power of Attorney
There are three main types of Power of Attorney:
General Power of Attorney
A General Power of Attorney can be useful if you are planning to live out of the country and want someone to deal with your affairs and sign documents on your behalf. You could want it for a short or extended period of time or even for a specific issue. It ceases to be valid if you should lose mental capacity to carry out your own affairs. In that case, you would either need to sign a Lasting Power of Attorney or someone would have to apply for one to the Court of Protection for this facility on your behalf.
Trustee Power of Attorney
A Trustee Power of Attorney is similar to a General Power of Attorney but its powers are related only to a Trust and it has to be renewed every 12 months.
Lasting Power of Attorney
With a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA), it is possible to appoint someone to take care of your affairs in case you become incapacitated for some reason, whether through illness or accident. There are two types – Property and Affairs LPA and Personal Welfare LPA. A Property and Affairs LPA allows you to choose someone to make decisions about how to spend your money and the way your property and affairs are managed. A Personal Welfare LPA allows you to choose someone to make decisions about your healthcare and welfare. This includes decisions to refuse or consent to treatment on your behalf and deciding where you live.
These decisions can only be taken on your behalf when the LPA is registered and you lack the capacity to make the decisions yourself. Unlike Enduring Power of Attorney, an LPA has to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian in order for this to be used, rather than at the time when an individual becomes incapacitated.
When a client has not signed a Lasting Power of Attorney, KBL can also draft and register clients with the Office of the Public Guardian a Court of Protection in cases where an individual is unable to make their own decisions.