We are living in uncertain times. Apparently healthy people are dying or being left incapacitated as a result of contracting Covid-19.
If a person is left unable to assert their wishes once they have lost capacity, there is a fear that those acting on their behalf may not make decisions in line with the person’s beliefs.
The Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) is calling on families to consider making Lasting Powers of Attorneys in order to take sensible precautions at such an uncertain time.
What is a Power of Attorney?
A power of attorney is a legally binding document where the creator (donor) gives the appointed person (attorney) the right to make decisions on their behalf if the donor loses capacity to make safe decisions themselves. Or, in some circumstances, the donor can pass the right to the attorney whilst they still have capacity.
A lasting power of attorney has no expiry and can be made via application to the Office of the Public Guardian and can be made to protect both financial and health matters.
Property and Financial Affairs LPA
This form of LPA will enable the attorney to help out with the management of bank accounts; paying all bills; collecting benefits and pensions and if needed, coordinating the sale of property.
Health and Welfare LPA
At such difficult times, many people have been struck down with incapacity and have faced unwanted time in intensive care as they battle the virus.
Having a plan already in place would help the medical community understand the best way to help your recovery whilst ensuring your express wishes are considered.
This form of LPA would enable the attorney to make decisions on your medical care; the life-sustaining medical treatments you may need; the medical care you receive and decisions on the care you receive concerning eating, washing or dressing.
The signing and witnessing of these documents can be made via post or by innovative ways to comply with social distancing measures such as witnessing on a doorstep, over a garden fence or through a window.
Services from legalmatters during Covid-19 pandemic
Here at legalmatters, we continue to do everything we possibly can to service our existing and new clients during these very difficult times.
Our ability to provide remote services makes us stand out from the crowd. This means that you can deal with your will, power of attorney, probate, trust and tax advice etc all over the phone or by email and documents are sent to you by post. We are also advising our clients on signature processes bearing in mind social distancing measures.
Meanwhile, the office continues to operate with minimal skeleton staff for the protection of our staff, clients and visitors, enabling us to still process physical documents for our clients. If you do find that you need to call into the office for instance to have documents witnessed when it is otherwise difficult for you to arrange that with family and friends then do please get in touch.
If you would like to speak to one of our expert lawyers about an LPA, ring us on 01243 216900 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.