1. Overview

A lasting power of attorney (LPA) is a legal document that lets you (the ‘donor’) appoint one or more people (known as ‘attorneys’) to help you make decisions or make decisions on your behalf.

This gives you more control over what happens to you if, for example, you have an accident or an illness and can’t make decisions at the time they need to be made (you ‘lack mental capacity’).

You must be 18 or over and have mental capacity – the ability to make your own decisions – when you make your LPA.

There are 2 types of LPA:

  • health and welfare
  • property and financial affairs

You can choose to make one type or both.

There’s a different process in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

How to make a lasting power of attorney

  1. Choose your attorney (you can have more than one).

  2. Fill in the forms to appoint them as an attorney.

  3. Register your LPA with the Office of the Public Guardian (this can take up to 10 weeks).

It costs £110 to register an LPA unless you get a reduction or exemption.

Health and welfare lasting power of attorney

Use this LPA to give an attorney the power to make decisions about things like:

  • your daily routine, eg washing, dressing, eating
  • medical care
  • moving into a care home
  • life-sustaining treatment

It can only be used when you’re unable to make your own decisions.

Property and financial affairs lasting power of attorney

Use this LPA to give an attorney the power to make decisions about money and property for you, for example:

  • managing a bank or building society account
  • paying bills
  • collecting benefits or a pension
  • selling your home

It can be used as soon as it’s registered, with your permission.

Help deciding if you should make a lasting power of attorney

Contact the Office of the Public Guardian if you need help.

Office of the Public Guardian customerservices@publicguardian.gsi.gov.uk
Telephone: 0300 456 0300
Textphone: 0115 934 2778
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, 9am to 5pm
Wednesday, 10am to 5pm
Find out about call charges

You can cancel your LPA if you no longer need it or want to make a new one.