Official sample of an enduring power of attorney and an explanation of what makes the document valid.
The document on this page is a sample of a registered enduring power of attorney (EPA) and is for reference only.
EPAs were the legal instrument used before lasting powers of attorney (LPAs) were introduced in 2007 to give someone authority to make property and financial decisions for someone else. Existing EPAs can still be used, although you can no longer make a new one.
Unlike LPAs, EPAs can be used without being registered if the ‘donor’ (the person who made the EPA) still has mental capacity – the ability to make decisions for themselves.
If the donor has lost mental capacity, the EPA must be registered by the Office of the Public Guardian or the body it replaced, the Public Guardianship Office.
You can tell if the EPA is registered by looking at the front page of the document. There’ll be a perforated stamp at the bottom saying ‘Validated’ and a stamp at the top with the date of registration.
If the EPA is unregistered, it will lack these stamps but must still have been signed inside by the donor, one or more ‘attorneys’ (the people the donor appoints to make decisions) and witnesses.
The sample EPA included here is stamped, and the stamps and signatures are shown circled in red.
Always look through the complete EPA. Details within it might describe specific powers it gives the ‘attorney/s’ beyond the general authority a standard EPA provides. Each EPA might also impose limits on what an attorney or attorneys can do.
To be valid, the EPA must have been signed before October 2007, when EPAs were replaced by LPAs. If the EPA was signed after this date, it is invalid.
If the EPA is invalid, the donor could create an LPA, if they still have mental capacity. If the donor lacks mental capacity, their attorney/s could apply for a deputy order to make decisions on their behalf.
You can also search the Office of the Public Guardian register to confirm that someone has an attorney acting for them.
See this page on acting as an attorney for more information about the power an EPA gives people to make decisions for someone else.