Last week, 5th to 11th June was Carers Week. Carers Week is an annual campaign to highlight the numerous challenges and to recognise unpaid carers supporting families and communities.
It takes time for many unpaid carers to identify their caring role. Many lose out on financial, practical and emotional support before realising they are carers. The Carersuk.org website signposts various financial benefits that may be available.
On a practical level, if you are receiving care, you may want your carer or other trusted individual to speak for you and question healthcare professionals about your medication or enter contracts for goods or services on your behalf. You can make Lasting Powers of Attorney to formally authorise your carer to act in your best interests and, once registered, can be used immediately.
If you lose capacity and you do not have a Lasting Power or Enduring Power of Attorney in place, your carer or other(s) will need to apply to the Court of Protection for a Deputyship Order. The Court process to obtain a Deputyship Order is lengthy and considerably more involved and costly to make than Lasting Powers of Attorney. There is no guarantee that the Court will make the Order requested and, if made, there may be restrictions on the powers.
If you want to make Lasting Powers of Attorney, you will need to consider how many attorneys and replacement attorneys you want to appoint and how they must act. If you appoint more than one attorney from the outset, you must decide if they are to act: jointly (together) in respect of all decisions or some decisions; or jointly and severally (together and independently) in respect of all or some decisions. You will also need to consider how your attorneys should act if a replacement attorney steps into to act with continuing attorneys.
How Moore Barlow can help
If you would like advice on making and registering powers of attorney, we would be pleased to hear from you. We can advise on all aspects of powers of attorney, from simple to complex and including preferences, instructions and how to appoint your attorneys.