How can I look after my loved one’s financial and wellbeing affairs if they’re seriously ill with COVID-19?

TV presenter Kate Garraway recently highlighted the importance of having everything in place with an LPA ‘just in case’. A Lasting Power of Attorney allows you to appoint someone to make decisions based on financial issues and health and wellbeing, should you not be able to.  

A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document giving a trusted person responsibility over a person’s financial affairs or health and wellbeing wishes. LPAs are especially useful if the person in question loses capacity to make decisions for themselves due to illness. 

The trusted person acts on the person’s behalf when it comes to making financial decisions concerning money, bills, bank accounts, property, investments, pensions and benefits or decisions relating to health and welfare.

Lasting Powers of Attorney in the news

TV host Kate Garraway made some very sensible points on the importance of having an LPA in place. Kate’s husband, Derek, is sadly battling the effects of COVID-19 in hospital. She took to our screens on Good Morning Britain this week to explain her struggles with various financial issues, emphasising the importance of having an LPA at such a crucial time:

Kate said: “One of the practical problems – which a lot of people would’ve experienced if they’ve got the absence of someone in their life – like many things the car is entirely in Derek’s name, the insurance is in Derek’s name, a lot of our bank accounts.”

“There are a lot of financial goings that I’ve talked to you both about going on, which is making life very complicated because I can’t get access to things. Because legally I haven’t got power of attorney. And all this other stuff that goes on when you’re dealing with a situation where someone’s been sick for a long time.

Choose someone you trust

Anna Marie, Partner in the Birchall Blackburn Law Private Client team, explained: ‘Sadly, as we move into the next stage of this pandemic, now is the exact time when this document becomes very important.  If you haven’t already, I would urge everyone to consider using this time to act and put a Lasting Power of Attorney in place, appointing someone you trust who can make decisions about your finances, health and welfare, if you are unable to make those decisions yourself.’

Can I make an LPA during the COVID pandemic? 

In short – yes, you can make an LPA remotely during lockdown! 

We are currently taking appointments for LPAs over the phone or via video chat. You can choose from Facetime, Zoom, WhatsApp or any other video call provider you prefer to use. 

An LPA requires a witness for the signatures. Although a witness has to be there in person, it shouldn’t be a problem during lockdown as your signature can be witnessed through a closed window or even by a neighbour over the garden fence. 

For more information on how you can make an LPA remotely, check out our mini guide

If you have any questions at all about making an LPA during lockdown or about LPAs in general, our team will provide free and confidential initial advice. Just call us on 0800 614 722 or use the button below to email us:

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