What Is Power of Attorney and How Can It Help You?
In the past, conversations about death and wills were taboo. Our grandparents (and sometimes even our parents) consider it bad taste to talk about them. But the COVID-19 pandemic changed all of that.
We learned that we do not have the luxury of time, especially if we have children depending on us. We might not always have tomorrow. That’s why it would be best to start organising your affairs for those with a high probability of developing dementia or Alzheimer’s.
Here is where a power of attorney comes in handy. It’s a legal document that can help your loved ones manage your affairs, especially if you can no longer do it yourself. You can learn more about this by reading below.
Understanding a Power of Attorney
There are several reasons you need a power of attorney, but the most common are temporary arrangement and the loss of mental capacity. You can ask your solicitor to create the document if you are temporarily indisposed. Therefore, you need help with daily tasks.
Your solicitor can also create a power of attorney in preparation for your total loss of mental capacity or the capability to decide or communicate what you want. There are three elements to mental capacity: understanding your decision, the reason you need to make such a decision, and the possible outcome of your choice.
Assessing the situation before deciding does not mean you lack mental capacity. Say that a patient in the early stages of dementia does not need a power of attorney to choose their dinner. However, they may need the said document to make changes to their insurance.
Many people ask what will happen if they lose their mental capacity and do not have the legal document. In this case, the Court of Protection will step in to help.
What Are the Different Types of Power of Attorney?
You can rely on three types of power of attorney. You can ask your solicitor to make more than one. If you are temporarily unable to settle your affairs, your lawyer can create the ordinary power of attorney. It is only valid if you have the mental capacity to cover your financial transactions.
The second type is the lasting power of attorney, which includes financial transactions and decisions over your health and care. It comes into full effect once you lose your mental capacity.
The last one is the enduring power of attorney. They replaced this in October 2007, but it is still enforceable if you made one before the said date. It covers your property and finances and comes into effect once you lose your mental capacity.
They say that time is money. The pandemic taught everyone the value of money because you may not have tomorrow. It is why you must take care of your finances as soon as possible. Death or sickness may claim you during your sleep.
With that said, you should immediately reach out to your solicitors and draw your wills. Doing this will not only give you peace of mind because you know that you have done your responsibility, but it will also prevent any legal conflicts in the future.
If you need help creating a power of attorney in the UK, you can reach out and ask for help from Wills and Probate. Our goal is to help you iron out all your financial affairs. Call us now for more information!