POWER OF ATTORNEY
A Power of Attorney is a legal document that confers upon another person or persons power to make decisions about your assets and money. It can be set up to come into immediate effect or it can start at some time in the future, usually when a doctor certifies that you are no longer capable of handling your own affairs. The Power of Attorney can also be drafted to allow your Attorney to make decisions about your health and personal welfare, but these powers will not come into effect until a Doctor certifies that you are unable to make or communicate these decisions yourself.
There is no legal obligation to have a solicitor draw up by a qualified solicitor, but it is always advisable to do so or you may not comply with the strict rules laid down in the relevant legislation and not be capable of being registered with the Office of the Public Guardian which is a legal requirement for the Power of Attorney to be valid after you have lost capacity . You may be able to find a style on the internet but this may not be up to date or may not comply with Scottish law.
Everyone should consider granting a Power of Attorney. With some individuals capacity to handle their own affairs can be progressive as a result of old age or progressive illnesses. Unfortunately others can lose capacity very suddenly without any warning as a result of accident or sudden illness such as a stroke.
You should think very carefully about who you wish to appoint as your Attorney. It must be someone you trust, such as a family member or close friend. You can also appoint a substitute Attorney if your first choice of Attorney is unable to act. If you do not have anyone that is suitable your solicitor may agree to do this for you. Your Attorney will need to agree to act for you and has an obligation to keep a note of their actions as they will be accountable for their actions.
A Power of Attorney is not transferrable and if you only appoint one Attorney and for any reason he or she are unable to act you a new Power of Attorney you to arrange for a new Power of Attorney to be drawn up.
If you don’t have Power of Attorney and you lose capacity your family, or if you have no family, the Social work Department will likely have to apply to the Court for power to handle your affairs, This can be both costly and time consuming.
At WGM Legal we have years of experience and have drawn up many many Powers of Attorneys. Please contact us now for more information on a no obligation basis.
For a free informal chat or an immediate response please call us on 0141 616 6655.