Guide: Lasting Powers of Attorney

Things to consider when making a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA):

  • Decide who you wish to appoint as your Attorney or Attorneys for example your partner and / or children.  Your Attorneys must be over the age of 18 and people who you trust implicitly.  For a Property and Financial Affairs LPA, they must not be bankrupt.  You can appoint more than one Attorney to act on your behalf.
  • If you appoint just one Attorney, you may wish to appoint a substitute Attorney to take over should your first choice Attorney die or be unable or unwilling to act as Attorney.
  • If there is more than one Attorney, you need to decide whether they should be appointed to act jointly or jointly and severally (a more practical form of joint appointment where any one of your attorneys can act and sign on behalf of the Donor). Attorneys can also be appointed to act jointly in respect of some decisions and severally in respect of others, although you should seek specialist advice on this as this can cause problems when using the LPA if the conditions are not carefully drafted.
  • Appointing your Attorneys jointly offers extra security but appointing them on a joint and several basis is much more flexible, for example, if one Attorney is ill or on holiday the other Attorney could act for you.  If you appoint two Attorneys jointly and one dies then the other cannot continue to act as Attorney and in effect your LPA comes to an end.
  • Consider whether you wish to include any restrictions in your LPA, for example, to limit it to particular property or to particular aspects of your financial affairs.  Other restrictions and / or conditions you include might be that the LPA is not to take effect unless you become mentally incapable. We would recommend that you take specialist advice if you wish to include any restrictions to try to prevent these causing practical issues when using the LPA.
  • Consider who should be notified when the LPA is to be registered.  You can choose up to five people to be notified when the LPA is registered with the Office of the Public Guardian.  Once the Power is registered, it can be used by your Attorney.  The notification process is an additional safeguard as those notified can raise concerns on your behalf.  Notification used to be but is no longer mandatory.
  • Consider who should be your Certificate Provider.  This person confirms that you understand the nature and scope of the LPA you are entering into and you have not been pressured into making the LPA.  This must be someone over 18 years of age, and who you have known for at least two years, or someone who by reason of professional skills and expertise is considered competent to make the judgement necessary to give the certificate, such as a solicitor or doctor.

For more information, please contact us on 0330 016 9200 or email us at