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  • Writer's pictureThe Will Partners

Lasting Power of Attorney Applications (LPA) Considered as Important as Making a New Will

Lasting Power of Attorney

In 2023 the number of Lasting Power of Attorney applications registered with the Office of public guardian surpassed £1 million for the first time, however, too many people are still putting them off until it’s too late. 

With rates of dementia increasing and an ageing population, we believe that appointing an attorney to make decisions on your behalf should be a top priority. We still regularly see clients whose loved ones have lost capacity, and no provision has been made for loved ones to manage their affairs. This can become very difficult...



Why do I need an LPA?

An LPA is a legal document that specifies who will make important decisions for you if you are no longer able to do so. There are two types of LPA – one for health and welfare, and the other for property and financial affairs. Both must be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) before they can be used. 

If a loss of capacity has already occurred and no LPA’s exist, an application must be made and approved by the Court of Protection to appoint a “deputy”, who is usually a family member, friend or a legal professional.


People must be aware of the disadvantages to this. For example:

1.   It takes longer and the application involves lots of paperwork.  

A capacity assessment must be carried out and a form completed by your doctor. The deputy must record all the details of your individual circumstances including any income, assets and liabilities. Even though the application process can now be completed online, it can still take several months and may require a court hearing if anyone objects to who you have chosen.  


2.   It costs a lot more…

When registering an LPA, you pay £82.00 (some discounts can be available) for each of the two applications compared to deputies who must pay a fee of £408.00 just to apply! In addition to this, there is an annual supervision fee for every year they are in the role. We find normally that these applications are arranged by legal professionals which will also incur an additional cost. Furthermore, these fees are doubled up as just like LPA’s there are two types of deputy, property and financial affairs and personal welfare. It also costs a further £494.00 if your case is listed for a court hearing. 


3.   The result may not be what you want

Ultimately, it is the court who will decide on the deputyship, whereas it is you who decide on who you wish to be your attorney in your LPA. Property and financial affairs are more straightforward but, in the case of personal welfare, the court is typically reluctant to appoint a permanent deputy to this role and in most cases prefers that all parties involved work together to reach decisions about the person’s care. 


There are exceptions to this, but it tends to be in cases where younger people have been born without or lost capacity. For example, if parents have been making ongoing decisions about a child’s care and the child then reaches adulthood but still needs that support.

Being a deputy is also a much more onerous process than being appointed an attorney as the court supervises individuals much more closely than the OPG and requires them to submit comprehensive accounts of all expenditure every year.


So why take the risk in waiting?

Although Wills are understood and not untypical in our middle-aged years, LPAs are still not considered until much later in life. People are becoming more aware, but with not enough urgency.

When a loved one loses capacity, life is very tough for all concerned. The last thing anyone wants is for our family and loved ones to suffer even more difficulty in trying to manage our affairs.

In summary, this is why making an LPA is crucial. You can make sure not only that you can reduce that burden, but also that you appoint a trusted attorney that you have chosen to make important decisions for you rather than leaving it in the hands of the court and potentially a deputy you may not have personally chosen, and instead is decided by the court!! 


So please contact us today to arrange a free consultation in the comfort of your home and maybe with a lovely cup of tea too.



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