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What is an LPA?

An LPA gives someone else the authority to act for you to do things like access your bank account or tell doctors about how you want care if somehting happens to you.

If you don’t have this lined up, your family has to make an expensive and time consuming application to the court which can often take 6-9 months.

There are two types of LPA that cover slightly different areas,

Property and financial affairs.
Health and welfare.

You can have either or both types of LPA, but it’s common to get both done so that everything is covered in case of an emergency. Read below for more info...

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LPA for property and financial affairs

This allows your nominees (called ‘attorneys’ for the purpose of this document) to deal with your finances, to pay your bills, sell your property or investments and operate your bank accounts. Unless you specify otherwise, your attorney can
use your LPA while you still have capacity to make financial decisions.

If you allow your attorney to make decisions before you have lost mental capacity, it doesn't mean they automatically take all financial decisions for you, it just means that they can take these decisions if you allow them to at the time. This can be helpful if you're unwell but want someone to be able to get on with managing bills for example. 

LPA for health and welfare

This allows your attorney to make decisions about things like your medical treatment, where you live and how you spend your time. It would be for situations where you're very ill indeed. Unlike the LPA for property and financial affairs, your attorney can only use it when you have lost the mental capacity to make decisions yourself.

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