What is a Power of Attorney?

A Power of Attorney is a written document which gives somebody authority to take actions or make decisions on your behalf.

The document will give the Attorney (i.e. the person you want to help you) certain powers to take actions or make decisions on your behalf.

Why would I need a Power of Attorney?

If you become incapable of making decisions yourself, or it is difficult for you to communicate those decisions, your family or friends might have to go to court to get authority to act on your behalf. Nobody has the automatic right to take actions on your behalf without legal authority. A Power of Attorney lets you plan what kinds of things you want someone to do for you in the future, and who that person should be.

What decisions can the Attorney make?

The Power of Attorney document itself will determine this. You can include powers which relate to money or property only (called a Continuing Power of Attorney), or just decisions about your health or personal welfare (called a Welfare Power of Attorney), or both.

Can my Attorney use my Power of Attorney before I have become incapable?

An Attorney can only make decisions about welfare matters when you are no longer able to make those decisions yourself. However, if you want, you can set up your Power of Attorney in a way that allows your Attorney to deal with your finances and property before you become incapable.

Is a Power of Attorney not for older people?

No. Accidents or illness can happen at any age and to anyone.

Can I cancel the Power of Attorney once it is registered?

Yes, you can cancel your Power of Attorney or any of the powers granted in it once it has been registered.

How much does it cost?

We can provide you with a quote for making a Power of Attorney. Our prices vary depending on the amount of work involved, so the best thing to do is to phone us. We can provide a written quotation on request.

The Power of Attorney needs to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian, and there is a registration fee payable.