Legal Advice
Legal Advice

Elderly care help: Lasting power of attorney explained

June, 2013 financial advice for the elderly - Paperwork

What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?

A Lasting Power of Attorney, or LPA, let’s you appoint someone else to make decisions on your behalf. This is especially useful for those providing care for elderly people, be it friends or relatives, suffering from something like dementia where the ability to continue managing their own assets, finances and personal affairs will become increasingly difficult.

Why do I need one?

Everyone knows one should write a will to make sure loved ones are provided for when you die, but what happens if a family member is left mentally unable to make decisions because of accident or illness?

With an ageing population it happens more than most people think – and if your friend or family member hasn’t got a power of attorney specifying who can look after their affairs you’ll have to go through the Court of Protection. The court was set up to protect the assets of vulnerable people but can be a timely process. Having LPAs in place will allow action to be taken immediately.

Which one do I need?

There are 2 types of LPA – a health & welfare LPA, or a property & financial affairs LPA.

Health & welfare LPA

This allows you to choose 1 person or more, over the age of 18, to make decisions about things like:

  • your daily routine

  • medical care

  • moving into a care home

  • refusing life-sustaining treatment

This Lasting Power of Attorney can only be used once someone is unable to make their own decisions.

Property & Financial Affairs LPA

This lets you choose 1 person or more, over the age of 18, to make decisions about money and property for you, eg:

  • paying bills

  • collecting benefits

  • selling your home

You can appoint someone to look after your property and financial affairs at any time.

Make sure you pop back later this week as we delve a little deeper into the forms, costs and the demise of the EPAs – Enduring Power of Attorney.

Image courtesy of Flickr, Caitlin Childs

Related Articles

  • Providing care for elderly people can be a strain not only on the rest of your family but also on you. It’s important that when providing elderly care help for a loved one you also look after yourself!

    Read more
  • When providing care for elderly people, especially those who are suffering from a degenerative disease like Huntington’s, we know it can be tough. We also know that when it comes to the plethora of debilitating illnesses out there those providing home care for elderly people might not always know what’s best.

    Read more
  • Over the past few years our seasons have been changing, Summer seems to have disappeared and Winter now seems to run for months rather than weeks. If you’re providing care for elderly people then you will be all too aware of the dropping temperature and rising heating bills.

    Read more