Everyone over the age of 30 should ensure they have a Power of Attorney. In addition families with older relatives should act fast to establish an enduring power of attorney before changes to the rules complicate the process.
The changes, effective in mid-October 2007, will see enduring power of attorneys replaced by two types of lasting power of attorneys – one to cover property and financial matters and the other for the donor’s welfare.
It is not only the elderly who need an enduring power of attorney, as illness or accident may prevent anyone from looking after their financial arrangements and responsibilities.
From October 15 2007 the existing arrangement for EPA’s will be replaced by two types of lasting power of attorney and it will no longer be possible to establish EPAs, although existing ones will remain in force. The two new types of LPAs will cover property and financial affairs under one agreement and the donor’s welfare under a separate LPA.
The formalities are more complicated and the costs will therefore be higher, so our advice is to consider arranging an enduring power of attorney before these changes come into force.
Most people arrange a power of attorney or ensuring power of attorney when they organise their wills, currently this may be added on for as little as £150 for a couple but this is likely to increase to around £500 after October 2007.