Choosing your attorneys
Your attorney is the person or people that you elect to manage your affairs should you lose the capacity to do this for yourself. Their responsibilities will relate to your financial affairs, your health and welfare, or both, depending on the type of Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) they are named in.
It is important to think carefully about who you elect to act as an attorney, as this person will have the responsibility to manage areas of your life that you have most likely worked hard to build and protect.
You can select more than one attorney; however, you need to decide whether they will be able to make decisions separately or if they must come to an agreement together. Your My Will Expert will be able to offer advice regarding who you might pick to act as your attorney, but in the meantime, we have highlighted some key things to consider below.
Your ideal attorney
You must choose your attorney whilst you still have capacity; therefore, it is wise to create your LPA as early as possible. Your attorney:
- Must be over 18 years old.
- Must have the capacity to make their own decisions.
- Does not need to live in the UK or be a British citizen, although it may make their role easier if they live nearby.
- Could be a close friend, a relative, or a professional, such as a solicitor.
- Should be trustworthy, willing, and capable of making difficult or complicated decisions.
You can also provide guidance in your LPA to support your attorneys in these decisions, such as including some details of the kind of care that you would like, any treatment preferences or rejections, a list of assets, or details of any financial advisers you may have.
Choosing a solicitor as attorney
If you do not know anyone that is a good fit to act as your attorney, or you want to include a professional to assist the attorney(s) you choose from your family/friends, appointing a solicitor firm may be a good option for you.
Your attorney will likely need to make difficult decisions, such as the best course of treatment for your condition or the best strategy for your investments. Therefore, having a solicitor on hand to support could be advantageous. Whilst appointing a solicitor will likely lead to additional costs, it will ensure that your LPA is handled efficiently and professionally. Typically, solicitors will offer indemnity insurance to protect you and your family should anything going wrong.