Advances in medical services means that as a nation we can expect to live many years longer than our grandparents and great grandparents. Inevitably with age will come health problems including illness that affects memory and mental health such as dementia and Alzheimer¬ís.
When an elderly person starts to fail in this area it is important that they have someone they trust to manage their property and other financial affairs. This can be achieved by setting up a Lasting Power of Attorney before loss of mental capacity. Once mental capacity has been lost the Lasting Power of Attorney must then be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian.
A Lasting Power of Attorney will convey decision making powers to the attorney but they must act in the best interest of the elderly person at all times. Should someone have already lost capacity the Court of Protection will need to appoint a Court Appointed Deputy to take care of their financial affairs. The Court of Protection oversee transactions to ensure that they are being done in the best financial interests of the elderly person.
By acting as an Attorney you will manage savings and investments and if a property is owned you may have the task of selling the property on the open market for the best possible value. Once the property is sold you will need to make decision on how to fund the care for the elderly, arrange for a care assessment by the Local Authority and also collate the information regarding a care plan. You will need to choose the local of where care will be provided whether it is possible for care to be provided at home or in a residential care home setting.
The act of being an attorney is not easy and comes with the burden of responsibility so should not be accepted lightly. Remember to seek advice on such important matters and a solicitor experienced in such matters would be most advisable in the first instance.