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A few facts from the Alzheimer’s Society:-

  • “There are 850,000 people with dementia in the UK, with numbers set to rise to over 1 million by 2025. This will soar to 2 million by 2051.
  • 225,000 will develop dementia this year, that’s one every three minutes.
  • 1 in 6 people over the age of 80 have dementia.
  • 70 per cent of people in care homes have dementia or severe memory problems.
  • There are over 40,000 people under 65 with dementia in the UK.
  • More than 25,000 people from black, Asian and minority ethnic groups in the UK are affected.”

Source: https://www.alzheimers.org.uk

The above facts and figures speak for themselves. With the numbers set to rise substantially over the next seven years and more, with that in mind it is very important that people ensure they put legal protection in place whilst they still have the capacity to do so.

  • A Lasting Power of Attorney, what is it?

A Lasting Power of Attorney, previously an Enduring Power of Attorney, is a legal document which allows someone you appoint (your Attorney) to make your financial decisions when you can no longer do so. For example, paying utility bills and purchasing things you require.Last year, almost 650,000 applications were made to register the document and there are 2.5 million currently registered.

There are two types of LPA; -

• Property and Financial Affairs - This covers things such as managing your bank accounts, bills and your property.

• Health and Welfare - This covers where you live and any medical treatment you receive. It also allows you to make provisions for decisions about any life sustaining treatment.

  • When can the Lasting Power of Attorney be used?

The LPA will only be valid once it has been signed by all parties and then registered with the Office of the Public Guardian. The Property and Finance LPA can be used when you have capacity, or when you lose capacity. The Health and Welfare LPA can only be used should you lose mental capacity.

  • What happens if I don’t make a Lasting Power of Attorney?
Without a Power of Attorney in place, an application to the Court of Protection for a Deputyship Order may be required. This can be a very lengthy and expensive process which may result in someone you would not wish being placed in charge of your affair

  • I’ve just been diagnosed with dementia – can I still make a Lasting Power of Attorney?

In short, yes. A diagnosis of dementia does not mean you have lost capacity to make decisions. Should you or a loved one receive a diagnosis we would advise you to contact us as soon as possible to ensure an LPA can be put in place. We will be happy to discuss the benefits of having a Lasting Power of Attorney with you; call us on 01484 821 500, text LAW to 67777 or email willsandprobate@ramsdens.co.uk.