For Individuals

Powers of Attorney provide peace of mind that your personal affairs will be managed effectively by a trusted person (or persons) should you ever lose the capacity to do so yourself. However, it is essential that they are drafted correctly so that your appointed Attorney(s) can act in the way you would wish, without creating room for confusion, or the potential for actions to be taken of which you would not approve.

At Clifton Ingram, we can help you with the process of creating, registering, altering or enforcing Powers of Attorney, whether temporary and limited, or lasting. Our Power of Attorney solicitors can also advise Attorneys on their role, ensuring they can properly support a vulnerable person while staying within the strict rules by which they must abide.

Whether you are the person setting up a Power of Attorney or are acting as an Attorney, we are here to help you with tailored legal advice and close personal support, making what can be a difficult situation as simple as possible.

For immediate advice, please contact our team or you can read our FAQs to learn more about Powers of Attorney.

Why trust Clifton Ingram for Power of Attorney advice and representation?

  • One of the leading law firms in the Thames Valley and M3 Corridor
  • As a firm, we are ranked in respected client guide The Legal 500, recognising us as some of the best solicitors in the region
  • Decades of experience advising clients on Powers of Attorney
  • The expertise to provide help with Powers of Attorney promptly and efficiently, including in complex cases and where capacity is an issue
  • Ready to take immediate, firm action to protect your interests when needed
  • A service tailored to your needs and comprehensive help and advice to get a Power of Attorney in place

Contact our solicitors for Powers of Attorney in Wokingham, Reading and Farnham

Our proactive and approachable team of experienced Power of Attorney solicitors work from offices in Farnham, Reading and Wokingham. We provide legal advice on Powers of Attorney for clients from all over Berkshire, as well as Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Surrey and further afield.

Speak to one of our local solicitors who deal with Powers of Attorney today by calling 0118 978 0099 or using the contact form at the bottom of the page.

Learn more about Powers of Attorney:

What is Power of Attorney?

A Power of Attorney is a legal document that allows you to appoint one or more Attorneys to make decisions on your behalf in case you become incapacitated, lack mental capacity, or are unavailable for a certain period.

These documents are especially useful if you have been diagnosed with or think you might develop an illness like dementia, where you will be unable to make decisions for yourself.

What are the three types of Power of Attorney?

There are three main types of Power of Attorney, as follows:

  • Ordinary Power of Attorney
  • Lasting Power of Attorney, which can be in respect of either:
    • Property and Financial Affairs; or
    • Health and Welfare
  • Enduring Power of Attorney

Ordinary Power of Attorney

An Ordinary Power of Attorney or General Power of Attorney can be made to give authority to an Attorney in respect of property and financial affairs. It can be useful if you are going overseas and need someone to deal with a transaction on your behalf while you are away.

Should you lose mental capacity, the document can no longer be used.  It is usual for General Powers of Attorney to be restricted in terms of the length of time over which they can be used by your Attorney.

Lasting Power of Attorney

A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is usually put in place to allow one or more Attorneys to deal with your affairs should you ever become unable to do this yourself. You can appoint more than one Attorney if you wish. If you appoint two or more Attorneys, you can decide whether you want them to make decisions jointly or whether they can act individually.

You can also name replacement Attorneys who can act on your behalf if your original choice is unable to take on the role when the time comes.

There are two types of Lasting Power of Attorney; one in respect of property and financial affairs and one in respect of health and welfare.

Property and Financial Affairs Lasting Power of Attorney

A Property and Financial Affairs LPA gives your attorney control of financial matters. You can tailor this if you wish to exclude certain decisions regarding your finances and how you would like them to be handled. Actions an Attorney can usually take under this type of LPA include:

  • Paying bills
  • Managing bank accounts
  • Receiving benefits
  • Making investments
  • Maintaining and insuring property
  • Selling property (where necessary)

Once this type of LPA has been registered with the Office of the Public Guardian, it can be used by your Attorney if you wish, even if you still have mental capacity. For example, you may want someone to go to the bank on your behalf if you are not able to go yourself.

Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney

A Health and Welfare LPA gives your Attorney authority over a range of decisions, including:

  • Where you should live
  • What care you should receive
  • What your day-to-day routine may look like
  • Who you can see
  • What medical treatment you could receive or not receive

Unlike a Property and Financial Affairs LPA, it can only be used if you are no longer able to make these decisions for yourself.

Enduring Power of Attorney

Lasting Powers of Attorney have replaced Enduring Powers of Attorney (EPA), which had a similar function, with some differences. If you have made an Enduring Power of Attorney, this can still be used but it will be restricted to financial decisions only. You may wish to consider replacing your EPA with an LPA if it needs updating and/ or putting in place an LPA for health and welfare as there is no option to make an EPA in respect of health and welfare.

How to get Power of Attorney

If you wish to grant Power of Attorney to a trusted person or persons, you can do so through creating the appropriate legal document. If you need to act for someone who has lost capacity and they do not have a Power of Attorney, then you will need to apply to the Court of Protection to be granted this authority.

To make a Power of Attorney, you need to have the mental capacity to understand the implications of signing. This means that you must be able to:

  • Understand the information involved in making the decision
  • Retain the information long enough to make a decision
  • Consider the information in order to reach a decision
  • Communicate the decision
  • Understand the consequences of the decision

You can give instructions to a Power of Attorney solicitor and they will be able to prepare the document in accordance with your wishes, setting out the authority that you wish to give to your Attorney(s).

They will make sure that the signing process is dealt with correctly. This includes making sure that a certificate provider also signs the document, certifying that you have the mental capacity to execute it. With reference to LPAs in particular, it is crucial to ensure this is done properly in case questions are ever raised as to the validity of the LPA and your ability to sign it.

Your solicitor will also be able to register an LPA on your behalf so that it is ready to be used, should this ever be necessary.

How much does Power of Attorney cost?

Solicitors’ fees for Power of Attorney are generally modest. An LPA needs to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian before it can be used, which usually costs £82 for each LPA, although there are some exemptions.

What happens if someone does not have a Lasting Power of Attorney?

If you do not have an LPA and you should lose the ability to manage your own affairs, your family would not be able to use your bank account to pay your bills and they would not have the necessary authority to arrange care for you.

They would need to apply to the Court of Protection for a deputyship order. This is a lengthy process and could cause problems in the meantime. It is also more complicated and more expensive than putting an LPA in place and involves a higher level of ongoing supervision.

Our Power of Attorney fees

We are usually able to charge a fixed fee for preparing a Power of Attorney or Lasting Power of Attorney. If you contact our Power of Attorney team, we will be happy to discuss your requirements and the likely costs with you.

For more information about our related services, see our Will, tax, trusts and probate page.

Contact our Power of Attorney solicitors in Farnham, Reading and Wokingham

Our experienced solicitors for Powers of Attorney work from offices in Farnham, Reading and Wokingham. We provide help with Power of Attorneys for clients from all over Berkshire, as well as Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Surrey and further afield.

Speak to one of our legal Power of Attorney solicitors today by calling 0118 978 0099 or using the contact form at the bottom of the page and we will respond quickly.

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