Power of Attorney Solicitors
Deciding what will happen to your affairs if you become physically or mentally incapable of managing them yourself is a crucial part of financial planning. By contacting the power of attorney solicitors at Clough & Willis, you can ensure these important decisions will be taken care of by someone you trust.
Failing to make these arrangements can leave you and your family facing great uncertainty and legal confusion at what will already be a highly distressing time. Through lasting powers of attorney (LPAs) and deputyship orders, you can make sure your legal needs are always looked after, with important decisions delegated to a trusted confidante if you are no longer able to make them yourself.
At Clough & Willis, our solicitors have considerable experience in this area of law, and can walk you through every step of this often complicated legal process in a way that’s straightforward and easy to understand. Through our service, we will offer clear guidance and peace of mind when you need it most.
To speak to our team about registering a power of attorney or a deputyship application, call Clough & Willis on 0800 083 0815, or fill in our online enquiry form to request a call back at a time that’s convenient for you.
How we can help
At Clough & Willis, our specialist power of attorney solicitors are here to provide expert legal advice on registering or changing a power of attorney, as well as assisting with deputyship applications.
We will take your instructions and answer all of the questions you might have about the LPA process, including:
- Advising you on who to choose as your attorney
- Informing you about the powers an attorney can take on through an LPA
- Drafting the document, helping you structure the LPA according to your needs and completing the necessary paperwork
- Registering the LPA with the Office of the Public Guardian to make it legally binding
- If you are seeking a deputyship order for a person who is already unable to make their own decisions about their financial affairs, we can also provide legal assistance on this matter, including:
- Helping you obtain medical evidence that the person in question lacks capacity
- Assisting you through the lengthy process of applying for a deputyship order to the Court of Protection
- Advising you on how to fulfil this role and how best to manage the affairs of your loved one
Our team is led by Nicola Finbow and Rhianna Bateson, who are experienced practitioners in this field. Several are members of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP), further underlining their expertise.
At every step of the process, we will provide a friendly and personal service that’s free of jargon, and will support you as closely as we can during what can be a stressful situation.
What are powers of attorney?
Lasting powers of attorney are a legal tool that you can use to appoint someone you know and trust to take control of, or assist you with, your financial or personal welfare decisions if you lose the capability to make decisions for yourself. LPAs replaced enduring powers of attorney in October 2007.
There are two main types of LPA:
- Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney: This type of LPA gives your designated attorney the authority to deal with your finances, pay your bills, decide how your financial affairs are managed and even assist in selling your house if required
- Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney: These LPAs give your attorney the authority to make decisions with regard to medical or welfare-related issues, such as where you might live if you require residential or nursing accommodation and who is able to visit you. They can also cover decisions about life-sustaining treatments or the decision to accept or decline specific therapies.
What are deputyship orders?
If an individual does not have sufficient capacity to create a valid lasting power of attorney, an application will need to be made to the Court of Protection to appoint a legal deputy to take control of their affairs.
A friend, relative or solicitor will need to obtain medical evidence and apply for a deputyship order in order to do this, with the complex application process often taking several months. As such, it is recommended that specialist legal advice is sought before proceeding.
If you have not created an LPA and a deputyship order is required, you will not have any say in who is appointed to act on your behalf, which is why it is usually preferable to set up an LPA while you are still able.
Who can be appointed as an attorney or deputy?
Anyone over the age of 18 can be selected as an attorney or deputy under an LPA or deputyship order.
Often, loved ones with close links to the person in question are preferred for this role, including partners, family members or friends. In cases where complex financial or legal decisions are required, it may be preferable to nominate a professional attorney, such as a solicitor.
The ideal attorney or deputy or should fulfil the following criteria:
- They should understand and respect your wishes of the person they are acting for, and be comfortable with doing so
- They should have enough knowledge and competency to manage the person’s affairs effectively
- Their responsibilities should be clearly laid out in the LPA or deputyship order, especially in cases where multiple attorneys or deputies have been appointed to work together
Need help right away?
Contact Clough & Willis
Clough & Willis offer compassionate and easy-to-understand advice at every step of the legal process.