GETTING STARTED AS AN ATTORNEY
YOU’VE BEEN APPOINTED AS AN ATTORNEY – WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?
The person who made the Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) – the ‘donor’ – trusts you to make decisions for them if they lose mental capacity.
‘Mental capacity’ is the ability to make a specific decision at the time that it needs to be made.
The LPA covers the donor’s property and money matters, such as:
- using their bank and building society current and savings accounts
- claiming, receiving and using their benefits, pensions and allowances paying their household, care and other bills
- buying or selling their home
- saving or making and selling investments.
WHAT DO YOU DO NOW?
Talk to the donor about how they look after their finances.
- for example, do they:
- give birthday gifts to children or other friends and family (how much)?
- like spending on clothes, music or trips?
- donate to particular charities (how much)?
- want to sell or rent out their home if they move into a care home?
- prefer to keep a minimum bank balance?
Ask the donor where they keep financial information
- benefits, pension and tax letters
- bills and bank or credit card statements
- the deeds of any property they own
- the LPA document.
Get certified copies of the LPA document
- If they have mental capacity, the donor can certify copies. See www.gov.uk/power-of-attorney/certify
- A solicitor or notary will make them for a fee.
Helping the donor
As an attorney, you must help the donor to reach their own decisions, if they can. You can’t decide for the donor just because you think their decisions are odd or unwise.
The law says that you must assume that someone can make decisions, unless it’s shown that they can’t.
READ OUR GUIDE ON LPA ATTORNEY
In conjunction with the Office of the Public Guardian we have compiled a guide to help you in your role as Attorney under a lasting power of attorney (LPA). This booklet guides you through the key steps to manage your role and help the person that appointed you including:
- Helping the donor
- Help the donor to make decisions
- Managing finance
- Dealing with banks and other companies
- Dealing with other appointed Attorneys