Having an Enduring Power of Attorney and Guardianship appointed in a legal document is something that everyone should consider.
Power of Attorney
In general the Power of Attorney allows you to appoint someone to take care of your financial affairs while you are still alive on your behalf. This is a very powerful document and it is important to appoint the right person to take on this role if it is required.
There are different type’s Powers of Attorney and it is important to have the right one in place, the types are:
General Power of Attorney – this gives the appointed person the power to look after your financial affairs, but only while you still have full mental capacity. This can be revoked at any time and maybe for a short period of time if required.
Enduring Power of Attorney – this gives the appointed person the power to look after your financial affairs once you lose mental capacity. For example if you suffer from Alzheimer’s disease and are no longer capable of making financial decisions. This type of Power of Attorney only comes into place once a certificate is issued stating the person has lost mental capacity.
General and Enduring Power of Attorney – as you would expect this combines the features of both types of Power of Attorney.
Enduring Power of Guardianship
This document gives the appointed person the ability to make personal or lifestyle decisions on your behalf. These may include things like what day to day activities you undertake and decisions around your care and where you live. The powers given to the guardian can be limited and specific as required. The document comes into force once you are unable to make these decisions yourself.
As with the Power of Attorney it is important that a lot of thought has gone into the decision of who to appoint to this role. Your guardian must take into account your wishes and act in your best interests at all times and where ever possible make the same decision as you would have.
All information in this article is of a general nature and not specific advice.