Island Life Magazine Ltd December 2008/January 2009 - Page 20

life PROPERTY Getting to grips with the new Lasting Powers of Attorney Contact: Mark or Terence Willey From the 1st October 2007 it is now no longer possible to create any further Enduring Powers of Attorney (EPA’s), what replaced them is known as a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA). Fortunately all old EPA’s that were created before 1st October 2007 are still valid. The main differences between the old EPA’s and the new LPA’s are that to create an LPA a separate person has to act as what is known as a “Certificate Provider” to certify, among other things, that the person granting the power (known as the “Donor”) is under no undue influence, has capacity and fully understands the scope of the LPA. Furthermore, an LPA must be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) before the Attorney appointed under the document can make use of it, by registering it with the various financial institutions, to enable them to be recognised and assist with the Donor’s property and affairs. LPA’s also fall into two distinct categories whereby the Donor can appoint an Attorney to act in relation to either:1.Property and Affairs and/or; 2.Personal Welfare It is fair to say that Personal Welfare LPA’s are less common than appointing an Attorney to act in relation to all the Donor’s Property and Affairs. A Personal Welfare LPA can in essence deal with the decisions such as whether the Donor is to have life sustaining treatment, when they may not be in a position at the time to make that decision for themselves. This is obviously a very sensitive topic, but one which is moving on to a position whereby Advance Directives made by an individual are being increasingly more carefully considered, and indeed followed by our fellow professionals in the medical profession. Home Information Packs grabbed the majority of the headlines and it is fair to say in my experience that people are largely unaware that it is now no longer possible to create EPA’s and that there is a whole new set of forms and requirements to fulfil to Photo: Mark Willey set up a new LPA. By way of illustration, an EPA was a four to five page form, whereas the new Lasting Powers of Attorney are getting on for thirty pages! Nevertheless, setting up a LPA is a sensible thing to consider as one can never be sure what the future may hold with regards to us being able to conduct our own affairs in the future. The alternative if nothing is in place, is a costly and time consuming application to the Court to apply for a Deputyship Order to appoint a Deputy to be able to act on your behalf (under the re-branding that has taken place, this used to be an application to appoint a Receiver). On a positive note the Government have provided a very useful website in which guidance booklets and forms can be downloaded free of charge at www.publicguardian. alternatively if you would like any further advice or assistance with new LPA’s, or indeed advice relating to current EPA’s, please do not hesitate to contact Mark Willey on 01983 611888 or Terence Willey on 01983 875859. Terence Willey & Co Tel: 01983 611888 20 The Island's new funky radio station