As a Firm we regularly advise our clients of the importance of a Power of Attorney and the usual response, quite understandably, is “I don’t think I am in a position to need one of those yet”.

We have recently been instructed in several cases where unfortunately, a person has lost their capacity to articulate their decisions and wishes and did not have a Power of Attorney in place: either due to not knowing of the document’s existence; or believing that they did not require the document at that time. Unfortunately, incapacity can strike without warning which can result in loved ones or friends having to consider applying for a Deputyship Order through the Court of Protection.

If there is no Power of Attorney, should you, as a concerned family member or friend, need to take control of the finances and decisions of another, a potentially long and expensive process has to be undertaken should a Deputyship Order be required. This process with The Court of Protection includes the completion of several long forms, and evidence from third parties on capacity. The length of time that it may take the Court of Protection to grant you the same powers as would be available from a Power of Attorney, could take upwards of a year. During this time, it is unlikely that the finances of the incapacitated person can be reviewed and looked after effectively.

The statement therefore of “not needing one yet” should maybe be replaced with “can I really risk the chance of not having a Power of Attorney in place?”

The creation of a Power of Attorney through Barrett & Co Solicitors is an easy way of ensuring that should incapacity suddenly occur, your nominated family, friends or solicitor, will be able to look out for your best interests at the earliest opportunity, and at far less cost than via a Deputyship.

Our Private Client team can talk you through the advantages of Lasting Powers of Attorney and book an appointment for you to see a solicitor to discuss your wishes and enable future peace of mind. Please contact us on 0118 958 9711 or [email protected], or find out more on our Lasting Power of Attorney page.

Further Reading:

Powers of Attorney – getting them registered

Dealing with an Estate or Trust – top tips!

The Family Court – The Domestic Abuse Bill

"barrettandco" and "Barrett & Co" are trading names of Barrett & Co Solicitors LLP, a Limited Liability Partnership incorporated in England and Wales under registration number OC356263, with registered office at Salisbury House, 54 Queens Road, Reading, Berkshire RG1 4AZ. Barrett & Co Solicitors LLP is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority www.sra.org.uk (SRA Number 549694).

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