Gransnet forums

Legal & money

Lasting Power of Attorney

(22 Posts)
watermeadow Tue 11-Jun-19 20:11:43

I recently made a new will and the solicitor has sent me a leaflet about LPA.
After appointing two of my daughters as executors of my will I’m reluctant to burden them with further legal obligations.
Do most responsible people set up LPA just because they’re getting old, rather than because they’ve got dementia? I’d rather leave doing this until there’s a need.

mabon1 Tue 11-Jun-19 20:20:43

Solicitors charge a fortune for LPA you can do it yourself online for a very reasonable sum. If you are single or widowed do it while you're in full control of your faculties.

GrannyGravy13 Tue 11-Jun-19 20:21:09

It’s easier to do it before your health is compromised whether mentally or physically.

I am about to make a new will and set up power of attorney. I am only early 60’s have talked if over with AC and everyone is ok with it.

Marydoll Tue 11-Jun-19 20:30:26

We have just done this recently when we were updating our wills. As previously said, it's better to do it when you are physically and mentally able.

After a recent serious health scare, I know it was the correct decision.

Grannyboots1 Tue 11-Jun-19 20:32:13

We set up LPA for my father who was in the early stages of dementia. We had a home visit with a solicitor. His three children were present and the solicitor sent us all into his bedroom before getting his signature. We all had our fingers crossed and luckily he signed it. Having the LPA made a huge difference to me as I was paying his bills for him.

tanith Tue 11-Jun-19 21:22:23

I'm in the middle of doing this online it seems fairly straightforward and you can save it as you go along and take your time to think some of the decisions over.

Charleygirl5 Tue 11-Jun-19 21:28:52

I did mine last year because one does not know what is around the corner.

SueDonim Tue 11-Jun-19 21:39:50

If you leave it until you need it, you won't be able to do it Watermeadow. It needs to be done while you still have the use of all your mental faculties. By the time you need someone to act on your behalf, it's too late to set it up. You - or your family - will then be faced with paying out thousands of pounds to lawyers and the courts to administer your affairs, which is what happened with my FIL. This was back in the 80's, when POA wasn't well known. My MIL made sure she didn't let that happen when she got older and she wisely set up a LPA.

My Dh and I have just redone our wills and added in an LPA. The two things cost a few hundred pounds in total, which can be hard to find but not as bad as family having to pay out later on!

I also kept in mind that I'd read of a middle-aged couple who had done an LPA even though they assumed it wouldn't be needed for decades. Shortly after, they were involved in an accident overseas in which the wife received severe brain damage. The fact they had LPA meant it was so much easier for her husband to jump through all the hoops to get her medivacced back to the UK and then make other decisions on her behalf.

Missfoodlove Tue 11-Jun-19 22:48:27

Please don’t wait. I’ve spent 8 months trying to get deputyship because my mother refused to sign an LPA.
It has caused enormous unnecessary work, expense and pain.
It is a simple process and can be done on the government website for around £80.
This is not a burden on your children, it is a far greater burden for them if this is not in place.
My mother was in a home for 9 months while her house was haemorrhaging money and I was not able to stop a single bill or make any decisions on her behalf.
I’ve finally got control but it’s been a hard road, it feels like a full time job all the record keeping and forms the COP require.
I’m only in my mid fifties but ready to prepare my LPA.

grannyticktock Tue 11-Jun-19 22:53:57

Watermeadow, it's not burdening the daughters to give them these powers. They don't have to activate the LPA unless there's a need; if you don't do it and a need arises, that could be much more of a problem for them. If you ever lose the capacity to manage your own finances and make your own decisions (e.g dementia, stroke, brain tumour or injury, etc) they'll really find it a struggle to help you if they have no power to take over your affairs. With POA they can make decisions on your behalf, which in turn will eventually make for a smoother transition when they eventually become your executors. But as Sue says above, you have to do it while you still have the capacity to do so.

Floradora9 Wed 12-Jun-19 15:26:30

Well worth doing while you are fit and well .We have nominated each other DH and myself then if that is not possible the DC step in .In Scotland it is called lasting power of atorney if you want to cover health plus the financial side. We paid five hundred pounds to our lawyer for this though DSIL did his mum's himself online .

Liz46 Wed 12-Jun-19 16:00:47

My mother signed an enduring power of attorney many years ago and when years later she developed dementia, it made things much easier for me.

Squiffy Wed 12-Jun-19 16:14:06

watermeadow I’m reluctant to burden them with further legal obligations.

You will actually be reducing their burdens! Without LPA life will be so much more difficult if they have to unexpectedly handle your affairs - even if it's only on a short/temporary basis. We went through this with an Aunt, who refused to set up an LPA and we had to jump through all sorts of hoops just to pay a few of her bills when she was suddenly rushed into hospital

After that incident, she agreed to the LPA!

RedRidingHood Wed 12-Jun-19 16:18:19

It's very easy to do yourself, you don't need a solicitor.
Last time we updated our wills DH and I also set up LPAs. We have each other and both sons nominated.

Once done it's put away and will only come out if needed.

M0nica Wed 12-Jun-19 16:21:05

We have had LPAs since our late 40s when our children came of age.

They do not come into effect until you want them to or when it is clear that you are incapable of managing your own affairs. It gives me a sense of security to know that if I become unable to manage my own life my children can just activate the LPA and manage for me. I have total trust in them.

I have twice gone through the problems of obtaining powers of attorney when the person concerned is not able to make their own decisions, we got it through without resorting to the court of protection but at the price of a series of stratagems and at times, misinformation that I still feel uncomfortable at having undertaken. Only the my concern for the welfare of the subjects of the LPA enabled me to do it.

To see them happy and provided for, with only those who loved them making decisions for them, for what was left of their lives, made it worth while

BlueSapphire Thu 13-Jun-19 16:46:05

We took out EPAs years ago, before they changed to LPAs, and when I went to make a new will after DH died, I asked my solicitor whether I needed to update it to an LPA. Was told that there was no need and and that my EPA was perfectly valid.

Luckygirl Thu 13-Jun-19 17:58:18

We did ours many moons ago. I did it myself and had no problems - lots of instructions online.

I am very glad I did - OH was entirely loopy when he was in hospital and there was lots to sort out. Thankfully he is now more himself mentally, except occasionally at night.

Solicitor will charge arm and a leg.

grannylyn65 Thu 13-Jun-19 18:46:27

I did my own Lpa having seen many times the fall out of not having one. It took masses of research and time, but I managed it with a lot of online help

kittylester Thu 13-Jun-19 19:40:36

The Office of The Public Guardian are very helpful.

suziewoozie Thu 13-Jun-19 22:40:53

BlueSapphire some friends of mine who had EPAs recently made LPAs instead. I think the EPA doesn’t cover health and welfare and also is more complex when it comes to activating it - it might be worth checking that out

watermeadow Fri 14-Jun-19 10:01:23

Thanks so much, everyone. I knew almost nothing about it and now know that it’s something I must do.

Witzend Fri 14-Jun-19 10:17:05

We've set them up, both for finances and health and welfare.

The thing is, if you leave it until it's actually needed, you might not be in any condition to agree or sign - e.g. a stroke or dementia.

Particularly in the case of dementia, people can and do often become very suspicious as to,other people's motives and refuse - just at the time when it's most needed, because the person has become unable to manage their money. And the health and welfare one is also important for managing any GP/hospital appts. when the person is just going to forget or not want to go.

If there is no LPA in place when it's needed, and the person is not in a condition to be able to agree, you have to go via the Court of Protection, which can take a very long time and is much more expensive. So it can be a major headache when you have more than enough to cope with anyway.

My mother very sensibly set up an old style P of A long before she got dementia, but by the time we needed to activate it, since a large sum of money had already gone missing goodness knows where, she had become very suspicious and thought we wanted to steal her money.

My brother had to get really tough with her but he'd always been 'golden boy' so he managed it somehow.