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Lasting Powers of Attorney are not just for the elderly

Lasting Powers of Attorney are not just for the elderly

15 September 2016 Gail Donaldson

Lasting powers of attorney allow you to appoint someone you trust to look after your affairs in the event that you no longer have the capacity to do so. Most people appoint their loved ones.

When advising older clients on the advantages of preparing lasting powers of attorney I have had the same response, several times:

“You are only discussing this with me because of my age” they laugh...

They believe that it is only the over 60’s who should consider appointing an attorney to look after them and make decisions on their behalf.

My younger clients don’t think they need one because:

“It is only older people who get ill and can’t manage their own affairs” they laugh….

They could not be more wrong. I always advise all of my clients regardless of their age that they should appoint an attorney.

Statistically the older you are the more likely you are to have an illness that can affect your capacity. However, younger people are not immune to illness and anyone regardless of their age could have an accident which leaves them without the capacity to deal with their own affairs.

Clients prepare wills to look after their affairs after they die and they take out life insurance to make sure their loved ones don’t end up struggling to make ends meet.

Why then would the same clients leave it to the Court to decide who should deal with their affairs if they were to lose capacity? Not only is this extremely expensive it can also take months for the application to be approved.

Unfortunately anyone who is active in anyway should ensure that they have an attorney appointed.

I regularly cycle on my weekends and it absolutely amazes me just how many people don’t even take the basic precaution of wearing a helmet! I just hope that they have already appointed an  attorneys. After all none of us has a crystal ball and because we don’t know what will happen in the future we should not just leave it to chance!