LPA Certificate Provider

LPAs: Who can be my Certificate Provider and what is their role?

Getting a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) in place for your Health & Welfare and your Property & Financial affairs is SO important and can be a relatively stress-free and quick process but you will need a Certificate Provider…

So, what is a Certificate Provider, what do they do and why are they needed?

Well, in order to register your LPA you will need a Certificate Provider to sign the LPA application to certify that you have the capacity to make the application and that you understand the extent of the power that you are giving to your appointed Attorney, or Attorneys.

In order to do this, the Certificate must have knowledge of the TWO-STAGE TEST FOR MENTAL CAPACITY and make a judgement as to whether you (the person applying for the LPA) can understand the information that is relevant to making the decisions within the LPA, whether they are able to retain that information and weigh up the information in order to make a decision and communicate that decision.The Certificate Provider must also be aware of the FIVE PRINCIPLES OF CAPACITY:

You are assumed to have capacity UNLESS it can be established that you do not.

You are to be treated as though you can make decisions UNLESS all practicable steps have been taken to help you make a decision and all have been unsuccessful.

Just because you make an unwise decision it does NOT mean that you lack capacity.

Any decision taken MUST be done or made in your BEST INTERESTS.

PRIOR TO ANY DECISION, consideration must be given to whether it is effectively achieves the purpose in the least restrictive way to your rights and freedoms.

So, who can be a Certificate Provider?

A Certificate Provider must be either:

A PROFESSIONAL CERTIFICATE PROVIDER can be someone over the age of 18 that has the necessary knowledge and experience, because of the skill and profession, to make a judgment as to your capacity.

Frequently used Professional Certificate Providers include, US here at TLC, Solicitors, Estate Planners, Legal Professionals, GPs, Medical Professionals and Social Workers.

A PERSONAL CERTIFICATE PROVIDER can be someone that is over the age of 18 and has known you for at least two years prior to the date on which you apply to register your LPA.

This person will need to be someone that can have a full and frank discussion with you about your capacity and your understanding of the LPA and the consequences of registering such a document.

Who CANNOT be your Certificate Provider?

Your Certificate Provider cannot be under the age of 18.

Your Certificate Provider cannot be one of the people that you have appointed as your Attorney in the LPA you are applying for.

Your Certificate Provider cannot be one of the people that you have appointed as a replacement Attorney in the LPA you are applying for.

Your Certificate Provider cannot be one of your family members (this includes your boyfriend/girlfriend, partner,  in-laws and step-relatives).

Your Certificate Provider cannot be a family member of the appointed Attorneys (this includes their boyfriend/girlfriend, partner, in-laws and step-relatives).

Your Certificate Provider cannot be your Business Partner.

Your Certificate Provider cannot be your appointed Attorneys’ Business Partner.

Your Certificate Provider cannot be your employee.

Your Certificate Provider cannot be an employee of your appointed Attorneys.

Your Certificate Provider cannot be someone that works for a Trust Corporation that is appointed as your Attorney.

Your Certificate Provider cannot work for the Care Home where you live (if you reside in a Care Home), or a family member of someone working for the Care Home. This includes the owner, manager, directors, staff and employees.

What next?

Once the above has been satisfied, the Certificate provider will sign and date the LPA application and confirm that you understand the LPA, its purpose and consequences, that you are under no undue pressure or influence to sign the LPA, that no act of fraud is being committed and that there is nothing that would prevent that LPA from being registered by the Office of the Public Guardian.

 

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to get in touch for a FREE consultation.

If you would like a FREE chat to discuss your options, get in touch on info@TotalLegacyCare.co.uk or 01727 865 121

Leah Waller

Have a Question or
want to book a 

FREE Consultation?
 

Why Do YOU need an LPA? 5 reasons YOU should put your LPA in place

5 reasons
YOU should put your
LPA in place

You will know by now that here at TLC we are passionate about EVERYONE having Lasting Powers of Attorney in place! Contrary to popular belief they are not just something that should be considered as we get older.

So, we have set out below our FIVE top reasons for getting your LPAs in place. This is, of course, just the tip of the iceberg and there are many many more reasons but these should be enough to prompt you…

Having PEACE OF MIND is paramount.

Knowing that all of your property & financial affairs and your health & welfare decisions are in order and can be dealt with by your Attorneys, should you be unable to do so – whether that be because you are physically unable to or because you lack the capacity to do so – will not only put your own mind at ease but will also remove the emotional and financial burden from your loved ones should the situation arise that your LPA is needed.

Taking the decision to put your Lasting Powers of Attorney in place means that you have the control.

YOU DECIDE who you want to appoint as your Attorneys (and can also appoint replacement Attorneys). 

If you do not put LPAs in place and your loved ones/caregivers are put in a situation where an application has to be made to the Court of Protection to appoint a Deputy to make decisions on your behalf, then the Court will decide who to appoint and this may not be the person/people that you would have chosen.

Putting your LPAs in place means that you are able to GIVE SPECIFICS not only as to who you want to appoint as Attorneys but also in relation to how they will act; whether they can take decision on their own or whether decisions must be made unanimously by all Attorneys, or perhaps some decisions are to be taken by a specific Attorney or unanimously – this can all be provided for.

Your LPAs will also state when they can be used, whether this will be immediately or only when you lose capacity to make decisions.

You can also state your preferences and put in any restrictions that you want your Attorneys to abide by, giving you the ultimate control and peace of mind.

Putting your Lasting Powers of Attorney in place and getting them registered whilst you still have capacity is so important – TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE.

You are unable to register your LPAs once you have lost capacity and so your loved ones/caregivers will have to make an application to the Court of Protection to appoint a Deputy to make decisions on your behalf, then the Court will decide who to appoint and this may not be the person/people that you would have  chosen. This process will take a minimum of four months – all whilst important (and urgent!) decisions cannot be made.

The COSTS of putting Lasting Powers of Attorney in place pale into insignificance compared to the costs involved in making an application to the Court of Protection to appoint a Deputy to make decisions on your behalf. The application fee for the Court of Protection is currently £385 and this does not include any legal costs involved in drafting, finalising and lodging the application nor dealing with any questions or possible  objections.

The office of the Public Guardian charges a fee of £82 to register each LPA and each individual should register two LPAs – Health & Welfare and Property & Financial Affairs.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to get in touch for a FREE consultation.

If you would like a FREE chat to discuss your options, get in touch on info@TotalLegacyCare.co.uk or 01727 865 121

Leah Waller

Have a Question or
want to book a 

FREE Consultation?
 

5 reasons
YOU should put your
LPA in place

You will know by now that here at TLC we are passionate about EVERYONE having Lasting Powers of Attorney in place! Contrary to popular belief they are not just something that should be considered as we get older.

So, we have set out below our FIVE top reasons for getting your LPAs in place. This is, of course, just the tip of the iceberg and there are many many more reasons but these should be enough to prompt you…

Having PEACE OF MIND is paramount.

Knowing that all of your property & financial affairs and your health & welfare decisions are in order and can be dealt with by your Attorneys, should you be unable to do so – whether that be because you are physically unable to or because you lack the capacity to do so – will not only put your own mind at ease but will also remove the emotional and financial burden from your loved ones should the situation arise that your LPA is needed.

Taking the decision to put your Lasting Powers of Attorney in place means that you have the control.

YOU DECIDE who you want to appoint as your Attorneys (and can also appoint replacement Attorneys). 

If you do not put LPAs in place and your loved ones/caregivers are put in a situation where an application has to be made to the Court of Protection to appoint a Deputy to make decisions on your behalf, then the Court will decide who to appoint and this may not be the person/people that you would have chosen.

Putting your LPAs in place means that you are able to GIVE SPECIFICS not only as to who you want to appoint as Attorneys but also in relation to how they will act; whether they can take decision on their own or whether decisions must be made unanimously by all Attorneys, or perhaps some decisions are to be taken by a specific Attorney or unanimously – this can all be provided for.

Your LPAs will also state when they can be used, whether this will be immediately or only when you lose capacity to make decisions.

You can also state your preferences and put in any restrictions that you want your Attorneys to abide by, giving you the ultimate control and peace of mind.

Putting your Lasting Powers of Attorney in place and getting them registered whilst you still have capacity is so important – TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE.

You are unable to register your LPAs once you have lost capacity and so your loved ones/caregivers will have to make an application to the Court of Protection to appoint a Deputy to make decisions on your behalf, then the Court will decide who to appoint and this may not be the person/people that you would have  chosen. This process will take a minimum of four months – all whilst important (and urgent!) decisions cannot be made.

The COSTS of putting Lasting Powers of Attorney in place pale into insignificance compared to the costs involved in making an application to the Court of Protection to appoint a Deputy to make decisions on your behalf. The application fee for the Court of Protection is currently £385 and this does not include any legal costs involved in drafting, finalising and lodging the application nor dealing with any questions or possible  objections.

The office of the Public Guardian charges a fee of £82 to register each LPA and each individual should register two LPAs – Health & Welfare and Property & Financial Affairs.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to get in touch for a FREE consultation.

If you would like a FREE chat to discuss your options, get in touch on info@TotalLegacyCare.co.uk or 01727 865 121

Leah Waller

Have a Question or
want to book a 

FREE Consultation?
 

Dementia is close to our hearts at TLC…

Dementia is close to our hearts at TLC…

This week is Dementia Action Week (from 20 – 26 May 2019) and so we thought we would share with you, exactly why Dementia is a condition so close to our hearts.

We are passionate about Dementia having personal connections with family members developing the condition and so, we want to support others managing this challenging condition. We have created an educational website that we have just begun work on – www.DementiaTLC.co.uk – that provides simple advice, knowledge, hints, tips and support for those diagnosed with Dementia and in the early stages and their caregivers to provide them with confidence and ideas to support them in what can be a difficult time in navigating their dementia journey.

We are running a project in Care Homes using Rubik’s Cubes; researching whether learning to solve the Rubik’s can improve short-term memory, hand-eye coordination, dexterity and improve self esteem. We genuinely love this part of our job and it is an honour to work with the residents and see the positive impact we are making.

Total Legacy Care (TLC) is so named as we genuinely care, and are passionate, about our clients and protecting them and their families for later life; we are only too aware that conversations surrounding Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney, Moving into Care, Inheritance and the like are always difficult, often put off, and can cause tension amongst family members. We are here to make these conversations as simple and relaxed as possible, giving our clients as much information and time as they require to go through everything, ask questions and consider their options to ensure the best planning is put into place for their specific and individual circumstances.

Dementia affects many people, with so many of us having experience with the condition impacting our lives in a variety of ways.

Both Neil and I have first-hand experience of how Dementia can impact not only those diagnosed but their loved ones, their support system, professionals and the wider community,with both of us having seen our grandmother’s live with the condition.

I was very young (pre-teenage years) when my grandmother developed Dementia, specifically Parkinson’s but Neil’s experience was much more recent.

My grandmother was diagnosed with Dementia and as the condition progressed, she was unable to continue living in her own home and she moved in with the family so that we could provide 24-hour care and support for her. After several years, and as her condition deteriorated, it was apparent that 24-hour professional care was required and so nanna had to move into full-time care.

Neil

We can both relate to the similarities and variations of the condition and having now developed our knowledge much more, we are keen to help and support others on their Dementia journeys.

We are passionate about providing support for those recently diagnosed with Dementia, their caregivers and their loved ones and ensuring that they are able to put valid legal documentation in place (primarily Lasting Powers of Attorney) to enable them to continue living their life in the way they want to for as long as is possible whilst still being safe.

By helping those with Dementia to put plans in place, we ensure they have choice, control and influence over the decisions that affect them; putting valid Lasting Powers of Attorney in place allows the person living with Dementia to appoint an Attorney that they know and trust to make decisions that they would make themselves, if they could, and to take into account their wishes, acting in their best interest.

Becoming Dementia Friendly

Here at TLC we have made the following commitments to becoming Dementia Friendly…

o   All staff to undertake NVQ Level 2 in Dementia Care

It is important that as our organisation grows they have an understanding of Dementia and how to understand, communicate and care (on even a basic level) for those with Dementia and the different types of dementia and potential symptoms.

Both Neil and I have completed this course and we will require all staff to have commenced this within 12 weeks of starting employment with us.

o   Directors to become Dementia Friend Champions

Both Neil and I have undertaken the training to become Dementia Friends and complete the Dementia Friends programme. This is an Alzheimer’s Society initiative that aims to teach about Dementia, raise awareness and help the wider community to understand Dementia and how they can help. We will next take on the training to become Dementia Friend Champions so that we are able to deliver Dementia Friends training across the Home Counties.

o   To use social media to continue to raise awareness of Dementia, educate and help the wider community understand Dementia.

We have started an Instagram Account and Facebook Page to raise awareness and provide support and education for those recently diagnosed with Dementia and their caregivers.

We will continue to provide posts on these platforms on a regular basis.

We know that everyone can benefit from a little extra support and knowledge and so the aim of this website, and the social media accounts, is to provide knowledge and information as research continues to give easy-to-read hints & tips to help navigate, what can be, a tricky path through dementia. This website will also provide awareness to bring Dementia, and the variety of forms of the condition, to the forefront of people’s mind and support those in need, whether that be those finding out they have dementia, caregivers, loved ones of those diagnosed, professionals or the wider community. Our aim for the website is to give information in the same style that we do for TLC; colourful, fun and engaging. Those going to our site and using the website are looking for guidance and support and therefore we want to display a colourful, positive message rather than negative, dark and dreary which is the approach that is often taken. Although there is no cure for Dementia (YET!) it doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom and there are so many things that can still be done and positive steps and actions that can be taken and should be encouraged – this is our aim.

Leah Waller &
Neil Barras-Smith

Who do you want to make decisions for you and have they got the power?

PLANNING...

Who do you want to make decisions for you and
have they got the power?

This week we are focusing Lasting Powers of Attorney. 

Not everyone understands the importance of having a Lasting Power of Attorney in place and until the time comes, when an LPA is required, many don’t know what they are needed for.

If you were in the unfortunate situation where you had lost capacity, whether that be temporarily or on a permanent basis, who would you want to make decisions for you? Who would you trust to make the decisions that you would have if you had been able to?

Unfortunately, just because you are married it does not give your spouse the automatic right to make decisions for you, whether in relation to your health and welfare or your finances!

And…what about your business? If you own your own business, what would happen to that? Who would step in and would they have the power to?

Again, your second in command may not have the power and authority to make decisions, in relation to your business, if you are unable to do so and your spouse may not be able to either. 

So, where does that leave you?

  • If you have a business:

Check out our article, Should I have a Lasting Power of Attorney in place to protect my business?

  • To protect your finances and property affairs and ensure that someone that you trust to make the decisions that you would want to make if you are unable to:

Have a think about:

  • Who you would want to take decisions on your behalf in relation to your home, property, cash, bank accounts, investments and financial affairs if you were unable to.

Consider putting a Property & Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney in place.

  • To give you peace of mind in relation to your health and welfare:

Have a think about:

  • Who you would want to take decisions on your behalf in relation to your health, medical care, welfare, day-to-day living and activities if you were unable to.

Consider putting a Health & Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney in place.

A Lasting Power of Attorney is required during your lifetime so that someone can make decisions for you when you are unable to make them for yourself.

A Lasting Power of Attorney allows you to appoint someone that you trust to make decisions for you, if you lose mental capacity or are unable to make decisions for yourself.

 

If you would like to discuss putting a Lasting Power of Attorney in place, call us on 01727 865 121 or email us at info@TotalLegacyCare.co.uk for a free discussion on how we can help.

Leah Waller

Got a Question or want to book a FREE Consultation?

Only 55.2% of Lasting Powers of Attorney applied for in September 2018 were registered, WHY?

Only 55.2% of Lasting Powers of Attorney applied for in September 2018 were registered, WHY?

Statistics from the Office of the Public Guardian show that a total of 77,541 applications to register Lasting powers of Attorney were received in September 2018 alone (59,079 paper applications and a further 18,462 online applications) BUT only 55.2% of those were completed and registered by the Office of the Public Guardian.

So, with so many applications (500 more applications in September 2018 compared to August 2018) it is clear that the importance of putting an LPA in place is recognised by many but why are so many applications not registered?

The application forms are lengthy and do not require completion by a professional and so many opt to make the applications themselves to save money.

However, a Certificate Provider is still required to sign each Lasting Power of Attorney to certify that the Donor (the person making the application) understands the power that they are giving in the LPA, have not been forced or pressured into making the LPA, there is no element of fraud in the application and that they have no cause for concern. This certificate provider must be independent and have known you for at least two years or be a doctor or lawyer.

Although much of the form may seem simple and easy to complete, with just over half of applications being completed by the Office of the Public Guardian, what are the most common errors?

We spoke to the Office of the Public Guardian to ask what the most common mistakes were, causing applications to be rejected and found the following:

  • Inconsistency

The form is lengthy and requires the completion of both the Donor’s details and the Attorney’s details (the person being given the power by the Donor) in numerous boxes and inconsistency with this – whether this be incorrect spelling, inconsistent spelling, inconsistent dates of birth or address – this can cause the application to be rejected.

  • Dates

The application forms require signatures and the date that those signatures were completed to be inserted a number of times and the order in which this must take place is strictly stated in the forms. If this strict sequence is not followed, or dates are missing, this can cause the application to be rejected.

  • Outside the box

The signatures throughout the form must remain inside the boxes given and so if the signatures go outside the box, this may cause the application to be rejected.

With an £82 application fee, that is not refunded if the application is rejected, it is important to ensure your application is completed correctly and also ensure the application is in place ready for when you need it. The form being rejected or sent back to be rectified can cause significant delays and this may well have severe consequences.

Lasting Powers of Attorney allow you, the donor, to give power to the person, or people, you trust most, to make decision for you when you are unable to.

Total Legacy Care are able to provide a Certificate Provider when completing your application for a Lasting Power of Attorney.

If you would like to have a free chat about Lasting Powers of Attorney, please contact us on  info@TotalLegacyCare.co.uk or 01727 865 121

Leah Waller

Got a Question or want to book a FREE Consultation?

Nursery Rhymes and Death…What is the connection?

Nursery Rhymes and Death... What is the connection?

So, why do we use nursery rhymes to talk about Death?!

It may seem like an unusual way to get our point across, but talking about death is always an uncomfortable conversation and so doing this through Nursery Rhymes has been a great way of getting people talking and encouraging them to plan for their families’ future!!

Nobody likes to think about death, as is evident by almost half the country not having a Will in place.  Without the right planning in place, things can go terribly wrong and you have no control over where your hard-earned money ends up! Unnecessary pressures and burdens can drive families apart and this is something that nobody would really want.

So what do we want…here are some of the main reasons why we want you to plan properly for your family’s future:

  • your money goes where we want it to;
  • children are looked after and guardians (that you choose) are put in place if needed;
  • to make it as simple as possible during a time of grief for your family to deal with your estate and assets;
  • can reduce Tax complications ensuring that as much of your hard-earned money goes where, and to who, you want it to;
  • to give you piece of mind, knowing that your family is planned for, should the worst happen.
  • if you Google Wills, Lasting Power of Attorney (LPAs), Funeral Plans or Probate, you’ll get a raft of very sombre looking pages, using stock photos of sad-looking elderly people or a dull video explaining why each is important. It’s depressing watching and reading through them and so no wonder the majority of people put it off, don’t act and fail to get the right measures in place.

We are very different here at TLC!!

We want people to feel relaxed talking about these subjects, understand the implications but know there are solutions and we always aim to put people at ease and answer any questions that they may have.  Talking about the ‘Elephant in the room’ is so important to plan for your family’s future, that’s why we take a different spin on things!

We love making videos to explain our world (and get our personalities across!). YouTube is the second largest search engine and therefore more people are looking to video for information – we don’t want to miss this opportunity.

Most people don’t like thinking about, let alone answering, the question “Who will look after my children if I die before they turn 18?” That is where we decided to use Nursery Rhymes to explain the  scenario in a way that, we hope, people can relate to.

So, what videos have we produced so far?

Jack & Jill

Possibly the most popular of all Nursery Rhymes.

In this short video, we explain:

  • what happens to your estate if there is no Will in place;
  • what happens to your estate, if you have a partner but are not married;
  • how a Will is used to carry out your wishes;
  • what happens if you remarry after the death of your former-spouse;
  • how a Will is void on marriage; and
  • how your children could receive nothing if not properly planned for.

 

Humpty Dumpty

Another classic Nursery Rhyme…with a twist.

We look at the loss of capacity and how a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) can really help. We look at some of the burdens and complications faced when there is no LPA is place and when there is no one that can act for you when you are unable to act for yourself due to a lack of capacity.

We explain:

  • how banks can freeze bank accounts if an account holder loses capacity;
  • how partners/family members have to find ways to pay bills, liabilities and maybe even healthcare on behalf of their loved one with no access to their accounts;
  • the different types of Lasting Power of Attorney;
  • the complications on deciding on healthcare; and
  • the authority to sell a loved one’s home.

Little old Women who lived in a shoe

This is the most delicate of subjects, talking about who we would want to be the Guardians of our children should we not be around.

In this video we explain:

  • what could happen to the children if your proposed guardians are not stated in a Will; and
  • how a simple Will could make life so much easier for your children and those you have left behind.

Although the videos are light hearted, this is done in a delicate way to ensure that we never sway away from how important our work is and, although we may make the videos fun, we are professional and knowledgeable within our field.

Neil Barras-Smith

Got a Question or want to book a FREE Consultation?

Why do I need an LPA?

Why do I need an LPA?

Not everyone understands the importance of having a Lasting Power of Attorney in place and until the time comes, when an LPA is required, many don’t know what they are needed for.

A Will, although extremely important, only comes into effect when the person who made the Will passes away. A Lasting Power of Attorney is required during your lifetime so that someone can make decisions for you when you are unable to make them for yourself.

A Lasting Power of Attorney allows you to appoint someone that you trust to make decisions for you, if you lose mental capacity or are unable to make decisions for yourself.

There are two types of Lasting Power of Attorney:

  • Health & Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney; and
  • Property & Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney.

 

Health & Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney

The Health & Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney allows your appointed Attorney/s to take decisions on your behalf in relation to your health, medical care, welfare, day-to-day living and activities.

In order for your Attorney to take decisions on your behalf they may need to provide the original Lasting Power of Attorney, or a certified copy, to the following people, depending on the decision that is being made (the Attorney will also need to provide proof of their own identity, such as a passport or driving licence, again this will vary):

  • GP / GP Surgery
  • Hospital Staff
  • Care Home
  • Social Workers
  • Local Authority
  • Sheltered Accommodation

We understand that these conversations are difficult but we always recommend that you have discussions with your Attorney/s to ensure that they know how you would like to be cared for, your preferences for day-to-day care and your end of life care plan.

 

Property & Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney

The Property & Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney allows your appointed Attorney/s to take decisions on your behalf in relation to your home, property, cash, bank accounts, investments and financial affairs.

In order for your Attorney to take decisions on your behalf they may need to provide the original Lasting Power of Attorney, or a certified copy, to the following people, depending on the decision that is being made (the Attorney will also need to provide proof of their own identity, such as a passport or driving licence, again this will vary):

  • Bank
  • Building Society
  • Utility Companies
  • Care Home
  • Land Registry
  • Local Authority
  • Department for Work & Pensions
  • Service Providers

Take a look at our four case studies to see how a Lasting Power of Attorney can help:

If you would like to discuss putting a Lasting Power of Attorney in place, call us on 01727 865 121 or email us at info@TotalLegacyCare.co.uk for a free discussion on how we can help.

Leah Waller

Got a Question or want to book a FREE Consultation?

When should I make a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)?

When should I make a Lasting Power of Attorney?

 

Much like when deciding to make a Will (see our Article – When should I make a Will?), there is no right answer, to the question: when should I make an LPA? Everyone’s circumstances are different and so timing will be different for everyone. 

 

Everyone’s lives take different paths and at different ages and there is no one rule that will fit for all.

 

There are two types of LPA; a Property & Financial Affairs LPA which allows your Attorneys to make decisions in relation to your finances, bank accounts, stocks/shares, ISAs, your utilities as well as any property that you own or have an interest in, and a Health & Welfare LPA which allows your Attorneys to make decisions in relation to your health, medical treatment, day-to-day activities, living arrangements, accommodation and general welfare.

 

Below we have set out some of the milestones that making and reviewing your LPAs should be considered:

 

Recovering from an Illness or Injury

Ideally you would have an LPA in place to cover you prior to any incapacity (whether mental, physical or both) through illness or injury but should you not, it is extremely important to make this a priority once you have recovered.

 

Should anything happen subsequently, or completely separately, you will want to ensure that your loved ones can make decisions for you, on your behalf, if you are unable to without any hassle and delay. If you have already experienced a stint in hospital through illness or injury you will be all too aware of the delays that can be caused and the distress to loved ones through the lack of an LPA.

 

Once in a Lifetime Trip / Travelling

If you are embarking on a once in a lifetime trip or travelling it is important to consider an LPA. An LPA not only allows your Attorneys to
take decisions when you no longer have the capacity to do so but also if you are unable to because it requires you being physically present or a physical signature which may well be impossible if you are overseas, especially for an extended period.

 

Buying your first property

When most people buy a property it is usually their most valuable asset, so you need to prepare for this and ensure that someone that you trust is able to make decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so through lack of capacity or because you are not contactable due to being abroad or in unforeseen circumstances.

 

Getting married

When you get married you may wish to review your LPA and consider who was appointed as your Attorney/s and whether this should be updated to include your spouse.

 

Having a baby

Whether you have your own children, are fostering or adopting, having a child  (or children!) changes your life and means that you are responsible for more than just yourself. It is important to have LPAs in place so that your loved ones can make decisions, without delay and without the expense of going through the Court of Protection, in relation to any health, welfare, financial or property decisions that may be required.

 

As your children get older you may want to consider appointing them as your Attorneys.

 

Attorneys must be over 18 years of age.

 

Buying a new or bigger property & Investing in buy-to-let
properties or second homes

When investing in more property you should also consider reviewing your LPAs, should you be unable to take decisions in relation to that property, either through lack of capacity or because you are not physically available or contactable, you need to ensure that someone that you trust implicitly is able to, and has the power to make such decisions.

 

Investing in assets abroad 

When you invest in assets abroad it is important that you are aware of the legal obligations in that country and whether you should be appointing an Attorney to deal with assets in that country.

 

Equally, if you decide to spend more of your time abroad then you may well have large periods of time that you are not in the UK and will be unable to make quick decisions or be available for signing of documents should it be required and so having an Attorney appointed that can do this on your behalf is important.

 

Getting divorced or Dissolving a Civil Partnership

If your spouse is appointed as your Attorney and you subsequently get divorced or the civil partnership is dissolved then the former-spouse will no longer be able to act as an Attorney.

 

It is important to review your LPA at this stage to ensure that you have replacement Attorneys in place or that new Attorneys are appointed.

 

Getting re-married

As we have set out above, when you get married, you may want to appoint your spouse as your Attorney (if you have not already done so) and so your LPA should be reviewed to ensure that the people you trust most with your affairs are appointed under the appropriate LPAs.

 

Owning a business

If you own a business you should consider our Article – Should I have a Lasting Power of Attorney in place to protect my business?

 

There may be circumstances in which you are unable to make commercial decisions and if that should happen, it may well be that the person that you would most trust to step into that position is unable to and powerless.

 

Depending on the setup of your business an LPA should be considered to assist with succession planning and setting out your business plan in order to limit disruption to your business and relieve those closest to you of the burden that comes with uncertainty and the possibility of making a Court of Protection application, avoiding any delays.

 

Retirement

This is another milestone where your circumstances change and you may well want to review and update who you have appointed as your
Attorneys. 

 

As set out above, you may be fortunate enough to spend some of you time once retired, abroad and so may well need Attorneys in place in the UK to take decisions for you when you are unable to or not available.

 

Ill or Poor Health

A Lasting Power of Attorney must be put in place whilst you have capacity and a Certificate Provider is required to certify this in order for the Power to be registered by the Office of the Public Guardian.

 

An LPA must therefore be put in place before your health deteriorates so much so that you lose capacity and are unable to obtain the signature of a certificate provider to register your Attorneys. Leaving an LPA too late can mean that you are unable to appoint those you want as your Attorneys and can mean a long and expensive court process for your loved ones.

 

 

An LPA can be revoked at anytime, Attorneys can be removed and new Attorneys appointed as and when you review your LPAs and any changes are required.

 

There is never a right time to put your LPAs in place but as you can see there are many milestones throughout your lifetime in which your LPAs may be required and so getting them in place early and keeping them under review throughout these milestones is important.

 

If you would like to discuss putting a Lasting Power of Attorney in place, call us on 01727 865 121 or email us at info@TotalLegacyCare.co.uk for a free discussion on how we can help.

Leah Waller

Got a Question or want to book a FREE Consultation?

Is it too late to make a Lasting Power of Attorney once being diagnosed with Dementia?

Is it too late to make a Lasting Power of Attorney once being diagnosed with Dementia?

A Lasting Power of Attorney is put in place so that someone that you trust implicitly can manage your finances & property and/or your health & welfare on your behalf.

A Lasting Power of Attorney must be put in place whilst the Donor (the person giving the Power) has capacity and a Certificate Provider is required to certify this in order for the Power to be registered by the Office of the Public Guardian.

So, once diagnosed with dementia is it too late to make a Lasting Power of Attorney? 

This will depend on how soon the diagnosis takes place and whether the individual that has been diagnosed has lucid or ‘good’ days and is still of sound mind.

If the individual still has lucid days where they are clear on their finances, current affairs and appear to be unaffected by the dementia then it may well be that a Lasting Power of Attorney can be prepared at this time and instructions taken from the individual. A Certificate Provider will meet with the individual and go through, carefully and sensitively, the current circumstances and ask questions as to that individual’s circumstances and personal affairs as well as current affairs in the news and media to ascertain their general capacity and mental wellbeing. If the Certificate Provider is content that the intended Donor has capacity, then the Lasting Power of Attorney can be applied for.

When registering a Lasting Power of Attorney, notification can be given to up to five people although this cannot be given to those that are being appointed as the Attorneys. This provides extra security for the Donor and allows the person, or people, being notified of the intended registration the opportunity to object to the Power being registered for any of the following reasons:-

  • if they believe that the Donor does not have mental capacity;
  • if the person being notified has a genuine belief that the Donor was under undue pressure to give the Power or is a victim of fraud;
  • if the person being notified has a genuine belief that the Attorney would act in a way that is beyond their powers under the Power or would not be in the best interests of the Donor;
  • if the Donor of the intended Attorney, or Attorneys, have already passed away;
  • if the Donor and intended Attorney were married or in a civil partnership and this has now ended;
  • if the intended Attorney does not have the mental capacity to be appointed as an Attorney;
  • if the Attorney is bankrupt;

The clear advantages of having a Lasting Power of Attorney in place means that, if both a Health & Welfare Power and a Property & Financial Affairs Power are registered, then the Donor is able to appoint the people they know and trust (whilst still of sound mind to make such a decision) to make decisions for them at a time in which their health is deteriorating and takes an unnecessary stress away at a difficult time for them and their loved ones.

We are always happy to have a chat with you about putting a Lasting Power of Attorney in place, the Powers that are available and whether this is still a viable option for either yourself or a loved one.

If you would like to have a free chat about Lasting Power of Attorneys, please contact us on  info@TotalLegacyCare.co.uk or 01727 865 121

Leah Waller

Care ISAs: Are they worth the investment?

Care ISAs: Are they worth the investment?

With the proposal of Care ISAs being introduced we look at what they are and whether you should consider getting one in place.

The Government will give much more detailed information as to the Care ISA in the Autumn when their social care proposals are outlined but for now we know that the Care ISA is one proposal in the Government’s plans to get individuals thinking about, and saving for, the costs of their future care at a much earlier stage.

One of the benefits proposed with the new Care ISA is an exemption from Inheritance Tax for any funds left in the ISA at the time of death. However, with the ever increasing cost of care, this is likely to benefit only the very wealthy, who can afford to put large sums into the Care ISA to ensure that it is not all used up by care costs during their lifetime allowing a lump sum to be paid to their beneficiaries free from any Inheritance Tax.

It is also worth considering whether the Care ISA is different or any more advantageous to other pensions, investments or Trusts, that are already available and do not attract Inheritance Tax.

The Care ISA, although seemingly a great idea to provide savings for care in later life, may just be seen as yet another expense that is a luxury rather than a necessity for most. When reaching the age where going into care is a necessary consideration, it is likely to be too late to begin a Care ISA and those with time on their side, to consider saving for care in their future, are likely to consider savings for or paying off education, getting on to the property ladder and starting a family a more important and necessary expense, followed by private pensions and then possibly a Care ISA much further down their list of priorities.

Latest figures show that just one in twenty estates attract Inheritance Tax and so it is unlikely that the Care ISA will be of great benefit to the large majority when considering tax planning and planning for theirs and their families’ future and much less likely to achieve the Government’s aim of enticing us all to save more for the costs of future care.

With more information due in Autumn on the Care ISAs, we will consider the benefit of Care ISAs again later in the year.

If you would like to have a free chat about your Inheritance Tax liability and planning for the future, please contact us on  info@TotalLegacyCare.co.uk or 01727 865 121

Leah Waller