Covid pandemic prompts increase in enquiries about Lasting Powers of Attorney
Kent law firm Furley Page has seen an increase in enquiries about Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs) as the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic leads more people to put arrangements in place now in case they become ill.
LPAs allow an individual to make provisions in advance of a deterioration in their health, ensuring that someone they trust is able to deal with their affairs should they become incapable of managing their own finances or personal welfare.
The importance of LPAs was recently highlighted in a documentary about the challenges TV presenter Kate Garraway has faced since her husband was admitted to hospital with Covid-19 over a year ago.
In the documentary, “Kate Garraway: Finding Derek”, Kate openly discusses the difficulties she has faced since her husband, Derek Draper, was admitted to hospital in March 2020.
Val Prosser, a Senior Associate with Furley Page, is an accredited member of Solicitors for the Elderly. Val said: “Kate Garraway’s situation was complicated by the lack of legal protection she and Derek had in place. Kate was unable to access funds to manage her husband’s care or refinance her mortgage. She didn’t even have the legal right to see his medical notes, owing to data protection.
“Recent research by Solicitors for the Elderly shows that 65% of us think our next-of-kin will make medical and care decisions for us if we are no longer able to. In reality, this isn’t the case unless a Health and Welfare LPA is in place. Whilst there’s been a rise in the number of enquiries made about Lasting Power of Attorneys (LPAs) during the pandemic, only 22% of people in the UK actually have one.
“To avoid this difficult kind of legal situation it’s important to use a specialist lawyer who is experienced in this area of the law, and is trained to support people making these crucial, complex and difficult decisions. According to Which? 22,000 LPAs are rejected every year so it’s essential that you get your legal documents right.”
Furley Page’s Elderly and Vulnerable Client Team can provide advice on Lasting Powers of Attorney. Contact Val Prosser by email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01227 763939. You can also visit Furley Page’s website www.furleypage.co.uk or follow the firm on Twitter @furleypage and on LinkedIn.