Guide to the Types of Power of Attorney
Our guide to the different types of power of attorney, explaining when each respective type should be used.
A Power of Attorney is a legal document that is used to appoint someone to act on behalf of or in place of someone. Once completed, the power of attorney gives one person decision making power and authority to act on behalf of the person granting the power of attorney. The party granting the power of attorney is known as the Donor and the party being granted the power of attorney is called the Donee. This remains the same whichever type of power of attorney is being put in place.
There are Two Types of Power of Attorney
Firstly there is the Ordinary Power of Attorney. Typically this type of power of attorney is used to appoint someone to manage a person’s affairs temporarily, for example, when they are oversees on travel or holiday. The document can be drafted to grant general powers to act in all matters or can be limited to specific functions. An example of a specific function would be granting authority for a person to run your business and sign documents in your place or to deal with your bank in your absence.
The second type of power of attorney is the Lasting Power of Attorney. This was previously called the Enduring Power of Attorney. It is for use when the person granting the power of attorney is unable to handle their affairs anymore. The Donee is granted full control over the Donor’s affairs, including the right to determine what should happen to the Donee and how they should be looked after and cared for. This type of power of attorney must be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian once it is completed.
There are different legal forms which must be filled out in order to register a Lasting Power of Attorney depending on the circumstances in which the Donee is to act. The Enduring Power of Attorney or EPA was replaced by the Lasting Power of Attorney form in October of 2007, as a result of the Mental Capacity Act of 2005. A form, called the Personal Welfare Application (LPA), can also be used where the Donee only intends to exercise powers in relation to the personal care and welfare of the Donor. Where the Donee is appointed to manage the Property and Affairs of the Donor then a second LPA form needs to be used. Where the Donee is to have the power to act in relation to personal and welfare matters and in relation to financial and property matters then the form must be completed and lodged with the Office of the Public Guardian twice.
A Deed of Revocation form can be used to cancel both types of power of attorney. In the case of a Lasting Power of Attorney , the Donor can only fill out the Deed of Revocation prior to the registration of the Power and whilst they are still mentally capable. Once the person has been considered mentally incapable, a Deed of Revocation cannot be used. Once registered ,a Lasting Power of Attorney can only be cancelled or amended with the court’s approval.