SIX lawyers have been promoted to the position of Associate at law firm Ward Hadaway.
How would you cope if you or a member of your family became unable to make important decisions about finances or the future?
Issues surrounding mental capacity can make life very difficult for everyone involved.
However, there are measures that can be put into place in order to minimise the stress and anxiety that can be caused when someone close to you becomes incapable of making decisions about their own affairs.
Our Private Client team are experienced in dealing with families and others who require help and assistance in these situations.
We can help via preventative measures by making legal documents such as Lasting Powers of Attorney and Advance Decisions (or Living Wills) whilst an individual has capacity to do so.
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) gives you peace of mind by ensuring that you have someone who you trust on hand to make important decisions on your behalf.
An LPA is a legal document that enables you to appoint an “attorney” to make certain types of decision on your behalf.
There are two types of LPA:
- a Property and Financial Affairs LPA which authorises your attorney to deal with your finances and property, such as paying your bills and dealing with your assets, including buying and selling property on your behalf; and
- a Health and Welfare LPA which authorises your attorney to make decisions relating to your welfare, such as where you live, what you do on a day to day basis and what you wear and also to make decisions relating to your health, such as what medication you take and the giving of consent to treatment.
An Advance Decision (or Living Will) is a legal document that sets out your wishes regarding life-sustaining treatment.
If such measures are not in place and capacity has been lost, we can still help you.
Our team is experienced in making applications to the Court of Protection for a family member or professional to be appointed as a deputy to deal with the individual’s property and financial affairs if that person lacks mental capacity has not made a Power of Attorney.
We also regularly make applications to the Court of Protection to appoint Trustees in order to sell property or to make large gifts as part of inheritance tax planning and succession planning.
Members of the Private Client team also act as a Court-appointed deputy and attorney under a Lasting Power of Attorney for some of our clients.
For more details on how we can help you and your family, please get in touch.