Lasting Powers of Attorney: Live or dormant?

Is it better to register LPAs straight away? It’s up to the individual – but on the whole, the PGO might be right. To err is human, and the best way of getting to the right end result is not to test humanity’s weakness.

If we look at the system from a solutions-based viewpoint, then the best way of getting what the client wants or needs might be to get the document registered sooner rather than later. If there is an error that was missed somewhere along the line, then if the LPA is registered early, there is a chance that the donor still has capacity to execute a replacement document. If left until the very last moment – whilst this can still afford protection from attorneys managing your affairs before you are ready for them to – runs the greater risk of all your plans coming to nothing. With no prospect of recovery other than a deputyship application.

Abuses do exist in the system. As do errors. Because there are human beings involved. The most important thing is to focus on the end result. If a mistake has been made, can it be recovered? If an abuse takes place, can the abuse be stopped and the offending person prosecuted. If you want yes to either of those, then the best answer is to register the LPA as soon as possible. And to choose people who you trust (not people of last resort). This gives the widest margin and cushion against abuse or error.

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