Attorneys can make the following decisions under a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA), subject to any contrary restrictions, conditions or guidance contained within the LPA:
The term ‘donor’ means the person who has made the LPA.
The duties and responsibilities of the attorneys are set out in the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and are explained in the Code of Practice. www. justice.gov.uk/downloads/protecting-thevulnerable/mca/mca-code-practice-0509. pdf
The following points are particularly important:
It should be assumed that everyone has capacity to make his or her own decisions, unless it is proved otherwise.
A person should have all the help and support possible to make and communicate their own decision before anyone concludes that they lack capacity to make their own decision.
A person should not be treated as lacking capacity just because they make an unwise decision.
Actions or decisions carried out on behalf of someone who lacks capacity must be in their own best interests.
Actions or decisions carried out on behalf of someone who lacks capacity should limit their rights and freedom of action as little as possible.
Attorneys must always act in the best interests of the donor
In general terms, attorneys need to:
Attorneys must always check whether the donor has the capacity to make a particular decision themselves. Attorneys can still act if the donor has mental capacity and the donor has asked attorneys to act on their behalf and there are no restrictions in the document.
Attorneys only make those decisions the LPA gives them authority to make. That is:
Other duties include having a duty to:
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