Why it is important to have your paperwork in place

Date Published: 30/11/2020 17:29

Earlier this month we talked about the need for a business Lasting Power of Attorney. Now, in her latest blog, our director of operations Keeley Woodcock discusses why it is so important to have a Lasting Power of Attorney for your personal affairs too.

If Covid-19 has taught us anything it is how things can change so quickly. And for us it is essential to be in a position to support clients at their time of need. And one thing that means is we need all the right paperwork in place.

During this pandemic, and as part of our commitment to you, we have continued to work closely with our clients and their legal representatives, encouraging provisions to be put in place to protect you should you suffer loss of mental capacity due to illness or accident.  By use of a Lasting Power of Attorney we can ensure that your financial planning requirements are not compromised in any way should this misfortune happen.

A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legal document that lets you appoint one or more people to help you make decisions, or to make decisions on your behalf.  This gives you more control over what happens to you if you have an accident or illness and cannot make your own decisions. There are two types of Power of Attorney, one for property and financial affairs, and one for health and welfare.

This is not where you suddenly give up control.  You can choose whether your Power of Attorney can be used either before, or only when, you lose mental capacity.

By having these arrangements in place, we can ensure that there are no delays when it comes to managing your income requirements or needs through your pension and investments.

Note that without an LPA, your family/carers have no authority to make any financial decisions on your behalf and we would be unable to take instructions from them for your invested assets. 

But what about the cost?  Registration of an LPA with the Office of the Public Guardian costs £82 each. So it’s £164 to register both an LPA for property and financial affairs, and an LPA for health and welfare.  We would, however, recommend seeking advice from a solicitor to ensure the paperwork is completed correctly and also to ensure your attorneys fully understand their duties. 

By not setting up Power of Attorney in advance, in the event that you lose mental capacity, your family would need to apply to the court to be appointed as a ‘deputy’.  Understandably, this is a far more rigorous process with a general timescale of four to six months.  What would happen during this time if you were unable to access your savings, investments or pensions?

Importantly, it costs £365 to register as a deputy and legal fees can be £1,000 or more (if you choose to use a solicitor).  If the court decides the case needs a hearing, you'll need to pay £485 on top of that.

Deputies also have to pay an initial charge of £100 and ongoing supervision fees, which depend on the supervision level.  These fees are £320 a year, unless you require minimal supervision, then it's £35.

As you can see an overall far more expensive and extensive process.

In order to ensure that our records are kept up to date and in accordance with your wishes we feel it of the utmost importance that this area of financial planning is addressed with all of our clients and we would like to encourage you to consider arranging an LPA with your solicitor.  If you don’t have one, don’t worry we would be happy to recommend one for you.

For those who do already have LPAs in place, we would like to reach out to you and ask whether these are up to date?  If so, please send us a copy for our records as soon as conveniently possible. 

If you want to know any more please contact us on 01246 435996. 

Contact Us

Future Life Wealth
Management Limited,
Future House,
54 Ravenshorn Way,
Renishaw, Sheffield S21 3WY

+44 (0) 1246 435 996

Opening Hours
Monday - Friday 8.30am - 5.00pm

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