“I think in many ways, a Power of Attorney is more important than a Will,” Martin Lewis
When I heard this recently it made me think, as it isn’t a point I’d considered before. But actually, it makes sense.
If we die without a proper and competent Will in place, then it increases stress, costs and uncertainty for our families at an already difficult time. But over the course of a year or two, those problems will be resolved, and it doesn’t affect the person who has died as they are dead. Obviously we should still write a Will – why would we want to leave more difficulty than necessary when we die? – but the problems will be sorted and it’s done with.
If we were to lose mental capacity however, this could lead to many (perhaps many many) years of difficulty for our families if we don’t have Lasting Powers of Attorney. They could have problems managing our finances and our homes, ensuring we get the correct care. And all the while, our quality of life (such as it may be) is reduced, because our loved ones can’t do what we would want them to do for us. That’s even without the risk of our money being stolen because the wrong person gets permission from the Court of Protection to access our finances.
I don’t think I’ll ever forget hearing about a lady whose husband lost his mental capacity but had no Lasting Powers of Attorney in place. The stress was such that, horrifically, this lady felt relieved when her husband died.
Doing Lasting Powers of Attorney is a kind thing to do for your family and for yourself.