What is the Difference Between a Power of Attorney and a Lasting Power of Attorney?

Expert Lasting Power of Attorney Solicitors East Yorkshire and the York area

What is the Difference Between a Power of Attorney and a Lasting Power of Attorney?

What is the Difference Between a Power of Attorney and a Lasting Power of Attorney?

There are several different types of power of attorney, including:

  • Power of Attorney
  • Lasting Power of Attorney
  • Enduring Power of Attorney

We take a look at their uses, including appointing someone who would be able to deal with your affairs for you if you ever became unable to manage them yourself.

At Lockings Solicitors, we regularly advise clients on powers of attorney. We can draft the document for you and where necessary arrange for it to be registered ready for use.

We have particular expertise in dealing with older clients and circumstances where mental capacity is an issue. Associate Director and Head of Private client Joanne Liversidge is a member of Solicitors for the Elderly, a national organisation of lawyers with experience of dealing with older and vulnerable clients. She is also a Dementia Friend with an in-depth understanding of this challenging condition and the associated legal implications.

As well as conducting more complex matters personally, Joanne supervises a team of expert solicitors and paralegals who are all down-to-earth, approachable individuals who take the time to understand and achieve your needs.

If you would like to discuss making a power of attorney, ring for a FREE initial chat on 01482 300 200, email us at welcome@lockings.co.uk or fill in our Free Online Enquiry and we will call you back promptly.

What is a power of attorney?

A power of attorney is a legal document authorising a trusted individual to act on your behalf. The different types have different uses as follows:

Ordinary power of attorney

An ordinary or general power of attorney can be used to give someone the power to manage your affairs temporarily. This could be because you are going away and need someone to manage your finances for you or because you are physically incapacitated.

You can make a limited power of attorney specifying what authority you are giving to your attorney, for example, you may just want them to deal with the sale of your property while you are overseas.

An ordinary power of attorney cannot be used if you no longer have the mental capacity to make your own decisions. If there is a risk that someone may lose mental capacity, they are strongly advised to make a Lasting Power of Attorney.

Lasting Power of Attorney

A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is longer-term option. It appoints one or more attorneys to deal with your affairs, should you become unable to manage them yourself. You must have mental capacity at the time you sign the LPA.

There are two main types of Lasting Power of Attorney:

  • A property and financial affairs LPA; and
  • A health and welfare LPA

A Lasting Power of Attorney can be made and kept in case it is needed in the future. If you were to lose the ability to make your own decisions, but you did not have an LPA in place, a family member would need to apply to the Court of Protection for a deputyship order. This is a lengthier, more expensive and more complicated process than making and registering an LPA. It also involves ongoing supervision of the deputy by the court, which must also be paid for.

Once you have an LPA, it can be used as necessary. For example, if you were temporarily unable to manage your financial affairs, your attorney could do this for you. Once you were able to take over again, your attorney could step back.

A property and financial affairs LPA can be used by your attorney even if you still have mental capacity, for example, if you needed a hospital stay for a physical ailment or you were out of the country for a while.

A health and welfare LPA can only be used if you lose mental capacity.

Enduring Power of Attorney

An Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA) is the forerunner of the Lasting Power of Attorney. It is no longer possible to make an Enduring Power of Attorney, but if you have already made one, it can still be used. This includes registering it with the Office of the Public Guardian if it has not already been registered.

The main difference between Lasting and Enduring Power of Attorney is that an Enduring Power of Attorney can only be used in respect of property and financial matters and not health or welfare.

What authority is granted to an attorney by an LPA?

You can tailor your LPA to give your attorney the authority you wish them to have. If you want an attorney to be able to help you in the future, it is often useful to give them fairly wide scope to act for you.

Property and financial affairs Lasting Power of Attorney

A property and financial affairs LPA can give your attorney power to:

  • Pay your bills
  • Manage your bank accounts
  • Insure and maintain your property
  • Deal with your investments
  • Collect your benefits
  • Sell your home

Health and welfare Lasting Power of Attorney

A health and welfare LPA can give your attorney power to:

  • Decide where you will live, for example, whether you will live in a care home and which care home this will be
  • Make decisions about your daily routine
  • Make decisions about the medical treatment you will receive
  • Decline medical treatment on your behalf, to include life-sustaining treatment

The difference between Enduring and Lasting Power of Attorney means that if you want someone to deal with welfare matters on your behalf, you will need to put a health and welfare LPA in place, even if you already have an EPA.

Registering a Lasting Power of Attorney

Before an LPA can be used by your attorney, it needs to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG). This is generally done as soon as the document is signed, so that the LPA is ready to use if it is ever needed. The process can take several months and the OPG may raise enquiries before completing the registration, so by registering straightaway, there is a reduced risk that your attorney will be left waiting for the necessary authority to help you, should this become necessary.

Making a power of attorney

If you would are considering making a power of attorney and you would like advice, we will be happy to help. Our services include:

  • Advice on which type of power of attorney is right for your circumstances
  • Advice on choosing an attorney
  • Advice on choosing more than one attorney, including whether to give them the authority to act independently or requiring them to make decisions jointly
  • Taking your instructions and drafting a Lasting Power of Attorney on your behalf, including the authority which you wish to give to your attorney
  • Registering your Lasting Power of Attorney with the Office of the Public Guardian so that it is ready to use, should this ever be necessary
  • Advice on mental capacity

Contact our Lasting Power of Attorney solicitors East Yorkshire

If you would like to discuss signing a health and welfare Lasting Power of Attorney, please feel free to ring us for a FREE initial chat on 01482 300 200, email us at welcome@lockings.co.uk or fill in our Free Online Enquiry and we will call you back promptly. We have offices in Beverley, Hull and York and deal with Lasting Powers of Attorney in East Yorkshire and the York area.

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