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Insights

Mental Incapacity – Your affairs, your way

Posted on 18th July 2018 in Later Life Planning

Posted by

Sarah Phillips

Chartered Legal Executive
Mental Incapacity – Your affairs, your way

Although no one relishes the idea of losing the ability to manage their financial affairs themselves, putting in place the appropriate measures whilst you are still able can save a lot of time and cost further down the line. 

Statistics show that, as people are living longer, cases of dementia are increasing.

Many people now know that, whilst you still have sufficient mental capacity to do so, you are able to appoint an attorney to make decisions on your behalf with regard to your property and financial affairs (the same now applies to your health and welfare affairs).  In doing so, you have an opportunity to choose the person who you think would act in your best interests when the time comes.  You are also able to record within the Lasting Power of Attorney document any wishes or guidance you have for your attorney thereby retaining some level of control over your affairs.

When a person no longer has the mental capacity to manage their property and financial affairs and they have not already appointed an attorney to do so, an application must be made to the Court of Protection for a deputy to be appointed.  The Court of Protection will have the final say over who is appointed to act as deputy and what powers they are given under any Order which is made.  Sadly, difficulties can arise when one family member feels that they should be appointed over another family member.

Whilst an application for the appointment of a deputy progresses through the Court of Protection, there is likely to be no one who is able to access funds to pay for items such as care home fees or other items which are needed.  Applications to the Court of Protection can take as long as six to eight months to be finalised and there is no guarantee that the person who you would have chosen to assist you with your financial affairs will be the person who ends up being appointed.

Much of the delay, cost and heartache can be avoided by getting your affairs in good order while you still can.  Don’t delay, ask about making Lasting Powers of Attorney today.

 

For further information and advice please call: 01392 207020 or 01626 772376 or email: enquires@tozers.co.uk and speak to one of our team.

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