Safeguarding your Future
The future can always seem a long way off, but none of us know what is round the corner.
An accident can happen to any one of us at any time and at any stage of our life. Such an accident may result in our mental capacity being affected, temporarily or permanently This may mean that we are no longer able to deal with our own affairs as we used to.
If this happened to you, who would you want to deal with your affairs? Unless you take action now whilst you can, this choice will be taken away from you and someone will be appointed by the Court of Protection.
If someone is appointed by the Court of Protection, they may not necessarily be the person whom you would have chosen. They may be a remote family member, friend or even a professional person who you have never met, who will then be making important decisions about your life and affairs.
In addition to which an appointment takes on average six months to put in place and costs around £1500. There are on-going annual fees involved which are payable to the Court of Protection and whenever the person appointed asks the Court for guidance or approval to take certain steps, morefees are payable.
What is the alternative I hear you cry? A Lasting Power of Attorney.
There are two types, one to deal with your financial affairs and property and one to deal with your personal health and welfare.
The benefits of a Lasting Power of Attorney are:
It allows you to choose who to appoint as your attorneys;
You can appoint replacement attorneys should one of your chosen attorneys or all of them be unable to act;
You can choose how your attorneys can act. For instance are they all to act jointly or can they have the option to act jointly and independently?
You can choose whether you want to restrict what your attorneys can do for you. For example you could specify that they are not to sell your property.
You can include guidance for your attorneys to follow to assist them in their role;
You chose who is notified of when the Lasting Power of Attorney is being registered to be used rather than someone else notifying whom they think is appropriate;
You choose who decides if you are capable to make the Lasting Power of Attorney rather than it automatically being your GP.
A Lasting Power of Attorney is not just for the elderly it is also for those who are employed in the services, business men and women who travel a lot and everyone else as none of us know what the future holds. Car accidents, accidents at work and accidents at home are becoming more and more common as our lives become more and more hectic and we find ourselves rushing that little bit more. A small bang to the head can be life changing.
Therefore as you can see, by preparing now for the future which may not be that far off, you have the peace of mind that should you be unable to manage your own affairs, you have someone whom you trust and whom you have chosen to act on your behalf.
If you wish to discuss this further, please contact Samantha Buckthought on 01752 663295 who is based at our Office at 60-66 North Hill, Plymouth, Devon, PL4 8EP. We also have an Office at Plymstock, 7 Radford Park Road, Plymstock, Plymouth, Devon, PL9 9DG if more convenient.