Making and registering an LPA during the coronavirus outbreak

If you want to make an LPA now, you can as long as you follow government guidance on social distancing and self-isolating.

This guidance was withdrawn on

This page has been withdrawn because it’s no longer current. Read more about living safely with coronavirus (COVID-19).

Applies to England and Wales

Coronavirus (COVID-19) may make registering a lasting power of attorney (LPA) difficult. There is information below on how you can ensure that you can still meet the requirements and help make the registration process faster.

On 21 February 2022, the government updated the guidance on staying safe and how to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. You can find more information about this on the coronavirus guidance page. There is specific guidance for Wales.

Our services are currently experiencing delays, and we apologise for any inconvenience this may cause. Please allow up to 20 weeks from us receiving your LPA for your application to be processed. This includes a 4 week waiting period required by law.

Given the delays we are experiencing, you may want to use some short-term options for health, welfare and financial decisions.

This information will help you make one, but you should also use the standard guidance on making an LPA. This guidance is for people making an LPA in England and Wales only.

Signing and witnessing

There are simple things you can do to protect yourself and others from COVID-19. They will help you ensure you can satisfy the requirements for making an LPA.

When signing the LPA, do not:

  • use digital signatures - the document must be printed out and signed by hand with a black pen
  • send people photocopies or scans of the LPA to sign - everyone must sign the same, original document
  • ask people to send you a scan or photocopy of the page they’ve signed - we cannot register an LPA that includes scans or copied pages

Witnessing must be done in person.

If the donor is not able to use a pen and cannot sign the LPA, someone else can sign on their behalf. The donor and 2 other people must be there in person to witness the signature being made. The 2 witnesses must also sign the LPA.

The certificate provider

The certificate provider must talk to the donor to make sure the donor understands the LPA and is not being pressured to make it.

We recommend this conversation happens face to face, but if it must be over the phone or a video call, the certificate provider should make sure the call is private.

How you can help us register your LPA as quickly as possible

  • Use our online service to make the LPA and pay the application fee by card rather than cheque.
  • Give email addresses for the donor and attorney(s). This makes it quicker to contact you.
  • Double check the forms before sending them and read the guidance on how to make LPAs. Make sure you:
    • have signed the LPA in the right order
    • send all the pages of the LPA, even those you didn’t fill in
    • send the original document, not a scan or photocopy

Please continue to check our coronavirus response page for updates. We will also update it if government information changes.

Published 17 April 2020
Last updated 23 February 2022 + show all updates
  1. Amended date to reflect most recent guidance changes in England and Wales

  2. Update to reflect date of new Welsh guidance

  3. Update to reflect welsh guidelines.

  4. Update to government guideline dates.

  5. Content amended to reflect new COVID guidance and simplify overall information

  6. Updating the Welsh text to reflect recent gvernment updates

  7. Updated the Welsh language information to reflect new guidance on 8 October

  8. Updates to English page to reflect guideline changes on 14 September, and to Welsh page to link to new English plan.

  9. Changes made due to 16 August announcement

  10. Updating Welsh information to reflect guidance changes in Wales on 7 August

  11. Edited due to lifting of restrictions on 19 July

  12. Change registration time from 15 weeks to 20 weeks

  13. Amended to reflect guidance change on 21 June

  14. Amends to Welsh text to reflect changes to government guidelines on 7 June

  15. 17 may roadmap changes

  16. Updated LPA processing times (removed duplication), including Welsh version.

  17. Changes made due to May Roadmap

  18. Added translation

  19. welsh version changes

  20. changes made due to roadmap out of lockdown announced Feb. 2021

  21. changes made to the welsh translation after PMs announcement of 4 January

  22. changes due to Lockdown 3

  23. changes to welsh version

  24. Covid 19 timescale update 10 Dec 2020

  25. changes for local tier restrictions from 2/12/20

  26. changes to welsh language version

  27. changes due to lockdown 5/11/20

  28. changed due to lockdown 5/11/20

  29. changes due to lockdown 5/11/20

  30. 12 October 2020 Covid changes

  31. changes to links to social distancing and local lockdown

  32. Changes to welsh language version

  33. Added translation

  34. Added translation and contact information

  35. Edited to include link to local lockdown requirements and for Scotland and NI LPAs

  36. Edited Signing the LPA section

  37. changes made in line with updated Covid regulations

  38. Edited information on signing and witnessing due to changes in social distancing rules from 4 July including link to page

  39. Updated to clarify that it is currently possible to make an LPA

  40. Added translation

  41. First published.