I hear about power of attorney many times. Does anyone have more information about this?
I recently contacted my GP practice it was mentioned in relation my sibling who I care for. I’m already an appointee in regards to benefits.
Does this needs to be drawn up officially by a solicitor. Under what context is it necessary.
Power of attorney
When someone makes a power of attorney, they appoint someone else to act on their behalf. The person making the power of attorney is called a donor and the person appointed to act on their behalf is called an attorney.
A power of attorney gives the attorney the legal authority to deal with third parties such as banks or the local council.
Some types of power of attorney also give the attorney the legal power to make a decision on behalf of someone else such as where they should live or whether they should see a doctor.
In order to make a power of attorney, you must be capable of making decisions for yourself. This is called having mental capacity – see under heading When does someone lack mental capacity?
Totally different to DWP appointee. How old is your sibling?
There are two kinds of Power of Attorney - one covers financial matters and the other is for health and welfare.
This Age UK guide is quite informative
Basically a person (the “Donor” gives someone else (the “Attorney”) the right to handle their affairs. It is the “Donor” who makes the Power of Attorney and they need to have some mental capacity. They can appoint just one person to act as Attorney or more than one person who then act “jointly” or “severally” according to the Donor’s wishes.
You can download the necessary forms for a Power of Attorney from the .GOV website, but it is often better to employ a solicitor versed in family law to complete the documents. If done via a solicitor they will consult with the “Donor” to ensure they understand what they are signing and, therefore be able confirm that the person has mental capacity. A Power of Attorney can be drawn up at any time but doesn’t become valid until it is “registered” - usually when it finally becomes necessary.
If the person does not have mental capacity (i.e. later stages of dementia) then you would need to apply to The Court of Protection for the right to act on their behalf - this is a long winded process and the Court will levy ongoing fees.
We were ‘lucky’ that when we arranged my Mother’s power of attorney she was still in the early stages of dementia and our solicitor considered she did still have mental capacity. The documents were drawn up at that time but we didn’t need to register them until a couple of years later when her dementia had progressed to the point where she had lost the capacity to manager her own affairs.
Once registered we were able to access her bank/savings accounts and takeover her financial affairs - it’s worth noting however that the Attorney(s) should keep records of all transactions made on the Donor’s behalf as the Court of Protection can check that the estate is being properly managed.
A Health & Welfare Power of Attorney gives similar rights for an Attorney to act on the Donor’s behalf in relation to any matters regarding their Health and Welfare - i.e. a GP cannot withold information regarding medical treatment.
Delayed in responding as it has been a busy month. An early spring cleaning is necessary.
My brother is 50 years old. Despite improving health, physically able with limited communication, he cannot read or write. I do all the finance, medical, you name it for his behalf. As pointed out, mental capacity…
A long drawn out expensive court affair is concerning.
I will look into all additional information provided and have a good chat with close relatives.
You just want some peace of mind if anything happens to you. Currently sorting out a carers emergency folder which is long overdue.
Have you looked on the web for power of attorney solicitors? They will advise you . You will be able to explain your brother’s understanding and capabilities.
I had to go down the court of protection route for my late husband as he lost capacity. It is sadly rather intrusive.
Please do try a solicitor for advice I found it very helpful.