Power of Attorney

There are 3 different types of power of attorney: lasting power of attorney (LPA), enduring power of attorney (EPA) and ordinary power of attorney.

Putting in place a power of attorney can give you peace of mind that someone you trust is in charge of your affairs.

If you're aged 18 or older and have the mental ability to make financial, property and medical decisions for yourself, you can arrange for someone else to make these decisions for you in the future. This legal authority is called "lasting power of attorney".

The person who is given power of attorney is known as the "attorney" and must be over 18 years old. You are known as the "donor".

Ordinary Power of Attorney

An ordinary power of attorney (OPA) is a legal document in which someone (the donor) gives another person (the attorney) the right to help them make decisions, or take decisions on their behalf. It can also be called a general power of attorney.

An OPA can only be used if the donor has mental capacity. Unlike some powers of attorney, an OPA does not need to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian, and can be used as soon as the donor signs it

Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)

This includes:

  • health and welfare LPA

  • property and financial affairs LPA

Health and welfare LPA
A health and welfare LPA gives your attorney the power to make decisions about your daily routine (washing, dressing, eating), medical care, moving into a care home and life-sustaining medical treatment. It can only be used if you're unable to make your own decisions.

Property and financial affairs LPA
A property and financial affairs LPA gives your attorney the power to make decisions about your money and property. This includes managing your bank or building society accounts, paying bills, collecting your pension or benefits and, if necessary, selling your home.

Once registered with the Office of the Public Guardian, it can be used immediately or held in readiness until required

Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA)

An EPA deals only with property and financial affairs, not with personal welfare issues.

Registering the power of attorney

A lasting power of attorney has to be registered before it comes into force.

There is a 4-week notice period for any objections to be raised. Once the power of attorney has been registered, the original document is returned to the applicant. The Office of the Public Guardian also gives notice to the donor that the LPA has been registered.


Making decisions on someone's behalf  

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You can choose to make someone or our firm your attorney to carry out certain decisions on their behalf in the short term or long term.