Have you ever considered who would manage your affairs if you became mentally or physically incapable of handling matters yourself?
It is always wise to prepare a Power of Attorney whilst you are fit and well since many people leave it until it is too late. This means that the Court of Protection may then need to become involved.
There are two types of Lasting Powers of Attorney. One deals with your Property and Financial Affairs. The other type deals with your Health & Welfare.
Most financial institutions will not speak to anyone other than the account holder. Having a Lasting Power of Attorney for property and financial affairs would ensure that the person of your choice, called your Attorney, would legally be able to deal with such financial institutions on your behalf. Your Attorney or Attorneys would also be able to manage your bank and building society accounts, pay your bills and collect your pension. They would also be able to sell your house if that was in your best interests.
If you are concerned about losing control over your financial affairs you can specify your requirements in the document and state that you only want the Lasting Power of Attorney to be effective if you lose capacity.
A Court of Protection application is far more expensive and lengthy than a Lasting Power of Attorney and that is why we advise our clients to make a Lasting Power of Attorney whilst they have capacity. If you have a Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Welfare, again you can choose who you would like to make decisions about your medical care or moving into a care home if you are unable to make the decision yourself.