Our expertise is your peace of mind
Making a Power of Attorney is an important part of planning for your future. It provides a safeguard if you should become mentally or physically incapable of looking after your own affairs. We all hope that will never happen to us, but having a Power of Attorney allows you to choose the people who can step in to act and take decisions on your behalf if you ever need help in future.
Becoming incapacitated can happen to people of all ages. Some people believe that your next of kin will be able to take these decisions or you, but this is simply not the case. Without a valid Power of Attorney in place, no one else can make decisions or act on your behalf, regardless of your relationship to them.
What is a Power of Attorney (PoA)?
A Power of Attorney is a written document which allows you to appoint people of your choice to take actions or make decisions on your behalf. You choose the person or persons you want to help you – called the Attorney – and decide what powers the Attorney should have. They can have the authority to deal with your financial and property affairs and also your personal welfare.
It is never too early to make a Power of Attorney so it makes sense to act now.
The Role of the Attorney
We understand how important it is to have the right people looking after you and your finances and our team of experts at Stuart & Stuart can help you to achieve that. You decide who you would like to appoint as your Attorneys but we can give you guidance if you have any concerns or queries as to who that should be. Trusted friends and family members are an obvious choice but you should also check with them that they are willing to take on the responsibility.
We can also discuss with you the types of powers you wish to include and when and how those powers should be used.
If you have been appointed as an Attorney, we can help to guide you in you in your acting and decision making, supporting you in your role.
What would happen if I did not have a Power of Attorney?
If you became ill and were unable to manage your day to day finances, your bank and other organisations would not accept instruction from anyone who has not been legally authorised to act on your behalf. The same applies if you become incapable of making decisions about your personal welfare.
In this case, if you did not have a Power of Attorney in place, a ‘Guardian’ can be appointed by the Sheriff Court. The Court procedure can be lengthy, complicated and expensive.
How Our Team Can Help You
We will talk you through the process of putting a Power of Attorney in place and will help you to decide which powers you would like to include. Our dedicated team of friendly advisors are on hand to meet with you, whether in our office or at a place convenient to you.