What happens if I don’t have a LPA?

If there is no Lasting Power of Attorney in place when mental capacity is lost then a family member, friend or solicitor will have to apply to the Court of Protection to be appointed as your Deputy. This can be an extremely time consuming and expensive process, in which you are unlikely to have any say as to who is controlling your affairs and during which time no action can be taken to deal with them.

The following shows an example of what can happen when Incapacity strikes and there is no Lasting Power of Attorney in place:

An example of an incapacity case step by step:

  • DAY 1

    David 63 has multiple strokes

  • DAY 4

    Family told he will never fully recover

  • DAY 9

    All bank accounts, etc with David’s name on, including joint accounts are “frozen”. His wife Fiona is unable to sign or act on husband’s behalf.  She needs to make an application to the Court of Protection.  Total cost will be approx £2,000 to £3,000 and will take 3-4 months

  • DAY 10

    Unable to finance application as she cannot access savings. Income now restricted and is unable to pay all the household bills.  Son comes to her aid and funds Court application and provides £300 per month toward household bills whilst court application progresses.

  • DAY 15

    Fiona has to establish a new bank account in own name as her own pension is paid in to a frozen joint account which she cannot access.

  • DAY 30

    Due to husband’s physical situation there is urgent need to move to a bungalow. This cannot happen as she is unable to sign for husband and so Fiona will have to wait for her Court application to succeed.

  • DAY 116

    Court makes it’s ruling. She will be made “deputy” but first she must take out £275,000 guarantee bond to protect her own husband’s assets against her mismanagement!  Cost £550 pa.

  • DAY 118

    Court tells her how much she can write a cheque out for. Must keep detailed accounts and make regular reports to the Court. There will be fees for the different reports and Court requests.

    All this will go on day in day out, until her husband either recovers or dies.

    The other real tragedy behind this story is that Fiona and David knew full well that they could have organised LPAs for a fraction of the cost charged by the Court of Protection, and so avoided all the stress and intrusion. But time and time again they put off making a decision until David was struck down and the decision was taken away from them.

As the Mental Capacity Act of 2005 is only a relatively new piece of legislation the trauma and considerable stress currently being experienced by thousands of people is expected to multiply over the coming years.

With an ageing population and a dramatic rise in the onset of Dementia and other debilitating mental illnesses the only sure way to protect yourself is to organise a Lasting Power of Attorney before it is too late.

Some people have found the cost at many solicitors to be out of reach and then feel confused as to where to turn. Our fees are fixed up front, highly competitive and with no hidden extras.

Beware: If you employ someone to draft your LPA make doubly certain of their total cost. Many offer a low initial price, and then you discover extra costs for “acting as your Certificate Provider” and “preparing the registration paperwork”. These are included in the Farsight Wills price, with us nothing is hidden.

At Farsight Wills we believe that we have come up with the most cost effective solution.  We offer various options to enable people to have a Lasting Power of Attorney in place.

If you would like to discuss Lasting Power of Attorney, the Court of Protection or any similar topics please feel free to contact your Farsight Wills consultant. We have offices based in Swindon town centre. Alternatively we are always happy to arrange a free home visit or have an initial chat on the phone.