As we age, it's natural for our health to deteriorate, and we may require assistance with our daily living activities. While we hope for the best, it's always prudent to prepare for the worst. That's where a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) for health and welfare comes in. An LPA allows you to choose someone you trust to make decisions on your behalf, in case you're unable to do so. This article will explore how an LPA can be used for advanced directives, why you should consider having one, and how a company like East Sussex Wills can help you with the process.
An LPA for health and welfare is a legal document that allows you to appoint one or more people (known as attorneys) to make decisions about your health and welfare, such as medical treatment, where you live, and the kind of care you receive. The person you appoint as your attorney must be over 18 years old and have the mental capacity to make decisions on your behalf.
One of the key benefits of an LPA for health and welfare is that it allows you to make advanced directives. These are instructions to your attorney on how to make decisions about your care in specific circumstances. For example, you may wish to refuse a specific treatment, or you may want to ensure that you receive palliative care if you're in the later stages of a terminal illness.
It's important to note that you can only make advanced directives for decisions that your attorney has the power to make. For example, if you appoint your attorney to make decisions about your health and welfare, you cannot give them instructions about your financial affairs.
So why should you consider having an LPA for health and welfare? Firstly, it gives you peace of mind that, if the worst happens, someone you trust will be making decisions about your care. This can be particularly important if you don't have any close family members who can act as your attorney. Secondly, it allows you to make advanced directives and ensure that your wishes are followed. Finally, it can make the decision-making process easier for your loved ones at a difficult time.
However, it's important to note that the LPA process can be complex. There are two separate LPAs that you can make: one for health and welfare and one for property and financial affairs. Each LPA has its own forms, which can be lengthy and confusing. The forms must also be signed by a witness and registered with the Office of the Public Guardian before they become effective.
That's where a company like East Sussex Wills can help. They can provide you with professional advice on the LPA process and ensure that your forms are completed correctly. They can also act as your certificate provider, which means they can confirm that you understand the implications of the LPA and that you haven't been unduly influenced.
In summary, an LPA for health and welfare can provide you with peace of mind that, if the worst happens, someone you trust will be making decisions about your care. It also allows you to make advanced directives and ensure that your wishes are followed. However, the process can be complex, which is why it's important to seek professional advice from a company like East Sussex Wills. They can help you through the process and ensure that your forms are completed correctly.