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  • Power of Attorney

Power Of Attorney

A Power of Attorney is a legal document which lets you plan what you would want another person to do for you, now or in the future should you become incapable of making your own decisions.

A Power of Attorney can be made up in three ways:

 

  1. Granting ‘welfare powers’  to allow your Attorney to make decisions about your welfare, or
  2. Granting ‘continuing powers’  to allow your Attorney to manage your finances, or
  3. Granting a combination of both welfare and continuing powers.

 

Welfare Powers can only be used when the Grantor is incapacitated. It is normally a doctor or other medical professional who will determine when you no longer have capacity to make decisions yourself.
 

Continuing Powers can be used when the Grantor instructs the Attorney to attend to financial issues on their behalf, now, or when they become incapacitated.

Your Attorney can be one person, or two or more. You can nominated anyone - friend, family member, someone you know in a professional capacity, or a combination of both.  If should be someone who is trusted by you to manage your affairs when you are no longer able to.  The law states that someone who is currently declared as bankrupt can only be appointed to deal with your personal welfare but not your financial and property affairs.

All Powers of Attorney require to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian. The Office of the Public Guardian, maintains a public register of all Powers of Attorney, and can be called upon to investigate and oversee the exercise of powers.

In order to create a Power of Attorney there are three required stages.

The first stage is to draft a written document which outlines the powers you wish your Attorney to have.  The document must set out the Grantor’s details, the Attorney's details and also whether the nature of the powers to be conferred - welfare, continuing or both.  The document is then signed by the Grantor in the presence of a solicitor or GP.

The second stage is for the solicitor or GP to sign a document to confirm that at the time the Grantor signed the Power of Attorney, they interviewed the Grantor, and were satisfied that he or she had capacity, and were not being unduly influenced by anyone.

The third and final stage is the completion of the Office of the Public Guardian registration form.  This document must be signed by the Attorney to confirm that they accpet appointment, and, if continuing powers are included, that they are not bankrupt. 

Our expert team of solicitors would be delighted to advise you on the advantages of granting a Power of Attorney, and assist you in the process of drafting and registering the documents.

 

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