Lasting Power of Attorney
The physical or mental incapacity of an individual can prevent them acting on their own behalf in respect of their financial affairs and their personal welfare - in addition to the unfortunate consequences for the individual in question, such circumstances can also be distressing and inconvenient for that person's family.
The sudden inability to handle one's own affairs makes it impossible, in the short term, to access one's bank account, pay bills and make other financial and day-to-day decisions.
The law, for all the right reasons, does not permit others, whoever they may be, to intervene unilaterally in your own affairs. However, that does not prevent those closest to you and perhaps dependent on you, from encountering difficulties if you become unable to act for yourself.
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) does allow you to plan for a possible future loss of capacity - a remote possibility which can happen to anyone through a traumatic accident for example, but as older age creeps on and with the continuing advancement of medical science an increasingly possible occurrence.
It is possible to set up an LPA in respect of your Financial & Property affairs or in respect of your personal Welfare & Social affairs, or for both of these issues. For either, you can elect to appoint a sole or joint attorney. If you elect to set up an LPA for both sets of issues you can use the same attorney(s) or a different attorney(s).
It is customary to appoint a close family member or a professional person as your attorney but bear in mind that if you appoint a professional they are entitled to charge for their services.