Forward Planning: Enduring Power of Attorney
ENDURING POWER OF ATTORNEY
If a person loses mental capacity without having signed a valid Enduring Power of Attorney then in order to manage the person’s property and affairs it is necessary to have such a person made a Ward of Court. This can be an expensive and lengthy process so having an enduring power of attorney in place is preferable.
There are many ways in which a person might lose mental capacity. For example Alzheimer’s disease, Dementia, Stroke or an accident.
By setting up an enduring power of attorney in advance you are able to choose some person or persons to deal with your affairs in a situation where you are no longer capable of doing so yourself.
The document creating the enduring power of attorney must be in a particular format and must include the following:
- A statement from you that you understood the effect of creating the power.
- A statement by a doctor verifying that in their opinion you had the mental capacity at the time that the document was executed to understand the effect of creating the power.
- A statement from a solicitor that they are satisfied that you understood the effect of creating the power of attorney.
- A statement from a solicitor that you were not acting under undue influence at the time.
- A statement by the chosen attorney or attorneys that they understand their obligations and agree to be an attorney.
At least two people must be notified of the making of an enduring power of attorney, none of whom will be the attorney. Notice parties are normally family members.
The first step to creating an enduring power of attorney is to contact a solicitor who will talk you through the whole process and arrange for the completion of all the documentation.
The Enduring Power of Attorney only comes into effect when it has been registered. The Attorney/s must apply to the Registrar of Wards of Court for registration, once medical evidence has been obtained, confirming that the Donor is, or is becoming, mentally incapable of managing his/her affairs. The solicitor who drafted the Enduring Power of Attorney usually takes responsibility for registering the document. This can take about three weeks.
There is a cost to all of the above and I would suggest that if an ONE branch were to contact a local solicitor they might get a group rate.
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