POWER OF ATTORNEY SOLICITORS ABERDEEN & STONEHAVEN
We all make decisions about our welfare and our finances every day, from where we live and what we eat, to big decisions about money, we choose what we feel is right for our circumstances. However, it is an unfortunate truth that through illness or injury, we one day may no longer be able to make these decisions for ourselves and may need the help of someone we trust. In these circumstances, a Power of Attorney allows someone else to make decisions on your behalf.
In this guide, we look at the different types of Power of Attorney, how they work in practice, and why it is a good idea to put a Power of Attorney in place no matter what stage of life you are in.
Types of Power of Attorney
There are several types of Power Attorney available in Scotland, and what is best for you will depend on your specific circumstances.
Simple Power of Attorney
A Simple Power of Attorney is normally used to deal with a single matter or created for a short time. A Simple Power of Attorney may only be used if you still have mental capacity. However, it is a useful tool where you cannot do things for yourself for a period of time. For example, if you are in hospital and need someone to access your bank accounts to pay bills, or if you need someone to deal with property purchase or sale while you are overseas.
Continuing Power of Attorney
Under a Continuing Power of Attorney, you grant your attorney powers to look after your property and financial affairs on an ongoing basis. When you set up a Continuing Power of Attorney, you can choose whether it will come into effect right away or only when you lose the mental capacity to make decisions for yourself.
Welfare Power of Attorney
Under a Welfare Power of Attorney, you grant your attorney the power to take any care, medical and health decisions on your behalf. A Welfare Power of Attorney only comes into effect when you can no longer make these decisions for yourself. If you are partially able to make these decisions, your attorney must try to help you rather than make these decisions on your behalf. A Welfare Power of Attorney covers matters such as medical treatment, where you live, what you eat and wear and decisions about the care you receive.
Combined Continuing and Welfare Power of Attorney
Perhaps the most common type of Power of Attorney is a Combined Power of Attorney which covers both financial and welfare matters. When you make a Combined Power of Attorney, you can appoint several attorneys to manage your affairs and make decisions on your behalf.
What are the benefits of setting up a Power of Attorney?
There are many benefits of setting up a Power of Attorney, but avoiding difficulty later is the main reason you would wish to do so. Many people discover that a lot of hardship and expense could have been spared had they only set up a Power of Attorney earlier.
Peace of mind
While no one likes to think about what could happen to them in the future, taking action to protect yourself and your family can provide you with peace of mind. We hope that you never need to use your Power of Attorney but having it in place allows you to continue with your life safe in the knowledge that should anything happen to you, your affairs will be taken care of by someone you trust.
Preparing loved ones
Without a Power of Attorney in place, no one has the power to make decisions on your behalf - not even your spouse or civil partner. When you set up a Power of Attorney, you have the opportunity to discuss the role and your wishes with the people you wish to appoint. You can ensure they understand your wishes clearly, are willing to act in the role and that they have all of the information they need to fulfil their duties.
Without a Power of Attorney, to make decisions on your behalf, your loved ones may need to apply to the court for Guardianship. This can be a long, expensive and involved process.
Contact our Power of Attorney Solicitors in Aberdeen and Stonehaven Today
At James & George Collie, we pride ourselves on our reputation for offering a high-quality service at a fair price. Our Aberdeen and Stonehaven based team of Power of Attorney solicitors are friendly and approachable and will guide you through every stage clearly and carefully. With over 180 years of practising law in the North-East, we are trusted by generations of families to provide accurate, reliable legal advice in plain English and free of legal jargon. No matter your circumstances, you can depend on our solicitors at James & George Collie.