BBC Breakfast news highlights the importance of making a Lasting Power of Attorney
BBC breakfast news today (03/05/2023) focused on the impact dementia can have on a family, highlighting the importance of making a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA).
News presenter, Sally Nugent said, “One of the real struggles that families face is receiving a Lasting Power of Attorney which gives relatives the right to manage the legal affairs of someone with dementia and make decisions on their behalf. But obtaining that document can be really difficult.”
Correspondent, Nina Warhurst focused on the story of Reggie and Julie Kirupairatnam. Reggie has dementia and Julie is his full time-carer. Discussing the process of making a power of attorney, Julie said, “It’s quite a complex process just getting the paperwork together.
“And then we sent it off and there is a 20 week wait for the whole process to go through the system and they do inform the attorneys that they’ve been asked to become power of attorney and they have four weeks to object.
“Over that time Reggie may have been deteriorating and you have to make more decisions”
Julie continued, “then you rely on the good will of doctors, dentists, hospital consultants whether they will speak to you on behalf of that person. Banks, the Department of Works and Pension won’t speak to you, they are very strong about that, if you haven’t got a power of attorney you cannot act on that person’s behalf.”
All of this adds to the stress of the situation, but it can be avoided.
What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?
An LPA is a legal document outline who you wish to take over your affairs should you not be able to manage them yourself.
There are two types of LPA, one in respect of your Property and Finances and one in respect of your Health and Welfare. The Property and Finance LPA helps your attorney to deal with banks and other financial institutions. The health and welfare LPA allows your attorney to decide things such as where you live and what care you receive.
An LPA is valid as soon as it is made so it is vitally important that you choose the right attorney or attorneys and put safeguards in place to prevent an LPA being used before it is necessary.
When to get a Lasting Power of Attorney
It is important to make an LPA as early in life as you can. Anyone can become incapacitated at any time, whether through illness or injury. Think of it in the same way as an insurance policy, hopefully you will never have to use it but it is reassuring to have it in place.
How to get a Lasting Power of Attorney
To make a Lasting Power of Attorney, contact us today on 01704 532 890 or 0151 928 6544.