One of the most important decisions you will have to seriously consider is making a Lasting Power of Attorney as soon as possible. It is incredibly important, because without these legal documents
in place, a loss of mental capacity will mean that you will have to deal with the "Court of Protection" and this can be an extremely arduous and expensive process for you and your family.
What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?
Thinking and talking about what would happen if our faculties deserted us is uncomfortable. Yet it's important to consider how much worse the situation would be if you had a stroke, serious accident or in this case. Dementia.
If someone has difficulties that mean they can't make decisions anymore, they will need help managing their finances. A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document where someone (while they still have mental capacity) nominates a trusted friend or relative to look after their financial affairs if they lost capacity. This includes operating bank accounts, dealing with Insurance, benefits, pensions etc.
The key point to remember is - Don't think you suddenly have to give up control. You can choose whether it can be used either before, or only when, you lose mental capacity. Your representative should only ever make a choice for you if you're unable to make that specific decision at the time it needs to be made.
The Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney
Mention an LPA and many will automatically think of a person's finances, but there are actually two types to consider: one for finance and property, and another for health and welfare. The processes involved are very similar for both types.
In a nutshell, the health and welfare document sees a nominated individual make decisions over day-to-day healthcare and medical treatments, as well as deal with any health and social care staff. It's also worth noting these are two separate legal procedures that are independent of one another.
Just because you give the trusted person power of attorney over your health, that doesn't mean they will automatically gain control over your financial affairs and vice versa. If you require the same individual to have power of attorney over both aspects of your care, then two separate legal documents will be needed.
We are able to signpost you in the right direction for you to consider this very important decision - Please contact us for further information through visiting one of our dementia friendly cafes