Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) enables a person to make the advanced decision to assign a person (or persons) to help make decisions, or to make decisions on their behalf if unable to in the future. This role is set out in the Mental Capacity Act and provides greater legal rights than the position of Next of Kin.
How to apply for Lasting Power of Attorney
Anyone can apply for an LPA using forms found on the UK government website. These forms are available in different formats with guidance documents and further support also available. You can also make an LPA online.
Role of an LPA
There are two types of LPA that can be assigned. These are:
- Property and finance
- Health and welfare
The role of an LPA is intrinsically linked to Mental Capacity as it requires the assigned attorney(s) to have a basic understanding of the Act and when their role(s) comes into action.
The role of LPA is monitored by the Office of the Public Guardian, and can be revoked if the donor (the person assigning the role) changes their mind while they have capacity to make the decision. It can also be revoked due to misuse, or if the circumstances of the attorney(s) change.
Do I need a Mental Capacity Assessment to apply for LPA?
In section 8 of the LPA application process, the role of the certificate provider is to ensure the donor (the person assigning the role) understands the role of an LPA and has the mental capacity to make this decision.
This does not necessarily require a formal assessment and report by a healthcare professional. However, if there is any uncertainty around the capacity of the donor to make the decision – or if the decision may be challenged by others in the future – then it is good practice to have a formal assessment to support the LPA. This can be carried by an independent professional, such as ourselves.
Please note: according to the Mental Capacity Act, you would need separate mental capacity assessments for each type of LPA to be assigned. This is because each assessment is decision-specific.
For more information about obtaining a mental capacity assessment to support an LPA application please see our services pages. Alternatively, please contact us.