Alarmingly, it is estimated that there are only about 100,000 registered Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA) made by adults in the UK. That is significantly fewer than 1% of those that should have one!! For those that are aware of the need for an LPA they will know that a Lasting Power of Attorney is a critically important document for individuals. LPAs protect your rights, wishes and requests regarding ongoing care and the management of your finances and property even if you sadly lose your capacity to make or verbalise informed decisions. Quite simply, a Lasting Power of Attorney is the only legally-binding way to ensure your ultimate wishes are carried out, should something happen to incapacitate you.
We understand that running a business is time-consuming, all-encompassing and can take over your days, nights and weekends. Putting a legal document in place “just in case” something should happen in the future is probably as far down the to-do list for most people as sorting ones expenses and perhaps that pile of business admin that sits the our desk! However, this issue is really important and we consider it to be as important if not more important than the creation of a Will (given that the average age of a loss of mental capacity is lower than the average age of death) however we do recommend that all clients arrange their LPA’s as part of their broader estate planning, such and their Will and any inheritance tax planning.
Save worry, time and distress
If you do ever become incapable of making key decisions (either through physical or mental incapacity, or for other reasons such as being out of the country or difficult family circumstances), you need to know your wishes are being carried out. Lasting Powers of Attorney for people ensures that somebody you trust is appointed to deal with your affairs whenever you need them. They will be legally obliged to act in your best interest.
Day-to-day personal decisions would be taken care of by your appointed trustee. The person (or persons) that you choose to handle your affairs is up to you; you could select a family member or another trusted person to make decisions about personal matters such as finance, health and care, .
Making a Lasting Power of Attorney guards against the most upsetting and unsettling aspects of the aftermath of mental illness or accident. Avoid financial upheaval, court involvement and social services involvement. Make your wishes known now, “just in case”.
If you wish to discuss the issues contained in this document, please contact Tag Professional in order to speak to our appointed Estate Planning Specialist Advice Firm in order that you can discuss these matters and begin the process to set in place this most critical element of personal financial planning.