Despite the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) experiencing worsening delays, new research indicates that the number of Power of Attorney applications continues to soar in England and Wales.
Over six million Powers of Attorney were currently registered with the Office of the Public Guardian at the end of March 2022, an increase of 5.3 million since the start of 2019.
It is imperative to establish a Lasting Power of Attorney in order to assist you and your loved ones in the event of your incapacity. You can use a Lasting Power of Attorney if you lose mental capacity and need a loved one to make decisions for you. This is in regard to your financial situation, medical treatment, and other affairs.
“Mental capacity” refers to “the ability to reach a decision”. The mental capacity of a person means that they have a thorough understanding of why they need to reach a decision. They also understand how it will affect them, and whether there will be any adverse consequences. In some instances, individuals are able to make some kinds of decisions, but they are not able to make others.
LPAs can be divided into two types: A Health and Welfare LPA enables your Attorney to make decisions regarding healthcare, including treatments and surgeries. A Property and Financial Affairs LPA gives your Attorney authority to manage your finances, assets, and property, provided the assets and property are located in England or Wales.
LPAs are beneficial in that they allow us to make better decisions. We all want the freedom to make our own choices, but what happens if those choices are no longer possible? If you become unable to think clearly for yourself, you get to decide who looks after your situation by appointing someone you trust to work in your best interests.
Make sure you have a Lasting Power of Attorney in place to protect yourself in the event of mental incapacity and contact us for further information on how to protect you in this situation.