Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)
Most people are aware of the importance of making a Will, but have you considered what would happen to your home and finances if you lacked the ability to deal with these affairs yourself?
As we grow older we can become frailer, have memory problems or suffer from dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease. A stroke or being involved in a car accident can leave someone unable to manage their day-to-day lives as they did previously. In any of these circumstances, an Attorney of a Lasting Power of Attorney can step in and take over the management of financial and property affairs.
The Attorney could be a relative, friend or a professional such as a solicitor. The crucial thing is that the document has been drawn up in advance whilst you are well and have full mental capacity. If someone already lacks mental capacity it is not possible to make a Lasting Power of Attorney (see Court or Protection, below).
It is also possible to appoint an Attorney to make decisions about your health and welfare, which can include decisions regarding life-sustaining treatment. These are often used as an alternative to a Living Will/Advance Directive.