Can You Make a Lasting Power of Attorney Online?
It is possible to make a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) online, but whether you should is an entirely different matter. The process of making a LPA seems straightforward, but for those who are unfamiliar with the process, there are many potential pitfalls which could result in your application being rejected or your wishes not being carried out correctly. In this article, Charles Fraser, Senior Solicitor and Head of the Older and Vulnerable Client team, looks at some of the common difficulties we see when clients attempt to make a Lasting Power of Attorney online.
How do I make a Lasting Power of Attorney online?
There are many ways to make a Lasting Power of Attorney online, with a variety of businesses looking to provide the service. It can be difficult to know whether these businesses are legitimate, and the level of service and assistance offered varies greatly.
For a LPA to be valid, it must be signed by any attorneys nominated as well as witnesses. The LPA must also be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian otherwise it will not be valid.
Why use a solicitor to set up a Lasting Power of Attorney?
When you use a solicitor to set up your Lasting Power of Attorney, you can be confident that it will be set up correctly and tailored to meet your needs and circumstances.
Your solicitor will not only set up the LPA but can also provide you with essential advice.
For example, they can help you decide who you should appoint as your attorney, ensure that they are willing and able to act, and understand their duties and obligations as an attorney.
Your solicitor can also help you to set out clearly how your LPA should operate. Can attorneys make decisions alone, or must they make decisions jointly with others? How should the LPA operate if assets are owned jointly or held abroad? Do you need a separate LPA to cover your business interests? These are just some of the questions that may arise during discussions with a solicitor that are often overlooked when people attempt to set up a Lasting Power of Attorney using an online service.
You may also wish to set out your wishes for how your affairs should be managed; a solicitor will help you to express any wishes you have clearly. They can also advise on how these should be set out to ensure that all eventualities are covered, and your wishes can be carried out.
Your solicitor will explain the effects of a LPA to you clearly to ensure that you understand, which can prevent the validity of the LPA from being challenged at a later date. They can also advise you on any additional steps you may wish to take, such as revising your will or inheritance tax planning.
Here to Help
If you would like to speak to someone about setting up a Lasting Power of Attorney, please get in touch with Charles Fraser, Senior Solicitor and Head of the Older and Vulnerable Client team.
Please note the contents of this article are given for information only and must not be relied upon. Legal advice should always be sought in relation to specific circumstances.