Lasting Powers of Attorney – Why are they so important?

A power of attorney is a legal document that allows those you trust to make decisions for you, or act on your behalf, if you are no longer able to or if you would like some help with making your own decisions.

Two women sit at a desk reviewing documents: by Gabrielle Henderson/Unsplash
Image by Gabrielle Henderson in Unsplash

Just a few reasons why you might need someone to act or decide for you…

  • A temporary situation. For example, you are admitted into hospital, and you need someone to look after your bills, property or even your business.
  • For long term plans. For example, you have been diagnosed with dementia or are in an accident meaning you may lose the mental capacity to make your own decisions in the future.


What do we mean by mental capacity?

  • For a person to lack mental capacity, they must lack one or more of the following:
    • understand the information relevant to the decision
    • retain that information
    • use or weigh up that information as part of the process of making the decision
  • Many people believe that if someone has dementia, they automatically lose their mental capacity. This is not true. Needing more time to understand and communicate does not mean you lack mental capacity.

What are the different types of LPA’s we offer?

Ordinary Power of Attorney and Business Power of Attorney

An ordinary power of attorney allows your attorney, one or more person, to make financial decisions on your behalf. The power you give your attorney can be limited so that they can only deal with certain matters and assets. For example, your bank accounts to pay the bills but not your property itself. There are two types of ordinary powers of attorney, LPA for financial decisions and LPA for health and care decisions.

LPA for financial decisions cover things like paying the mortgage, investing money, paying bills and buying and selling property. The attorney can be restricted in the decisions they make, or you can let them make all the decisions on your behalf. Your money and accounts must be kept separate from your attorneys, and you can ask for regular updates on how your money and accounts are being handled.

LPA for health and care decisions covers things such as your medical care, where you should live, what to eat and who you should have contact with. Although these seem like substantial aspects of your life, this can only be used once you have lost mental capacity. However, having an LPA in place for health and care can be crucial as it does give special permission or your attorney to make decisions about life-saving treatment.

Business power of attorney only apply to a business and nothing more. When you spend so much time and effort building a business, you want to make sure it is protected if something were to happen to you, and this is where a business power of attorney can help. allows a business owner to appoint a person or people, known as attorneys, to make decisions in the best interests of the organisation should he or she become mentally incapacitated or unavailable.

We are available to talk through options with you and advise you on how to achieve your aims. Contact us on 01543 440 308 or email