If you lose capacity either through an accident or illness such as a stroke or dementia, someone needs to act on your behalf to carry out your personal and financial affairs. Losing legal capacity to make decisions for yourself will mean that your bank accounts are frozen until someone can be appointed to make decisions for you. This can cause a lot of distress for friends and family as bills cannot be paid and pensions or benefits cannot be accessed.
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) specifically deals with the appointment of one or more people to manage your affairs if you are unable to do so.
There are two types of LPA; one to choose who can make financial decisions for you (LPA Property & Finance) and the other to choose who can make personal, medical or care decisions for you (LPA Health & Welfare).
Trying to arrange a Lasting Power or Attorney (LPA) after someone has already lost mental capacity can be very difficult if not sometimes impossible. Other more costly options need to be explored if this is the case. One of these options is known as a Deputyship Order which is more expensive and has many limitations as opposed to an LPA. We always recommend to arrange a Lasting Power of Attorney sooner rather than later to ensure your affairs are dealt with by the person you want, rather than the courts. It also means that you will not incur expensive legal costs.
By making a Will you decide exactly how your estate is distributed and plan for the needs of your individual circumstances. No matter how complicated or simple your Will may be, we will work closely with you, listening carefully to your needs and wishes, providing clear advice based on all of the information you give.
Planning your estate can involve many different aspects from basic Wills to Will Trusts and Lifetime Trusts. Modern families can have complicated dynamics and there is often a potential for conflict in the future if relationships break down or after the death of a client. Estate planning can also help to minimise tax liabilities or other expenses after your death.
We can also assist you with the following; setting up a lasting power of attorney, severing a joint tenancy on property, Will storage and related document storage, pre-paid funeral planning and probate. If you have any questions about our services or if you would like arrange a free consultation then please do not hesitate to contact us.