There is always a possibility that in the future we will become incapable of managing our own affairs either through senility, accident or illness. A person who has become incapable is often referred to legally as a“patient”. Often the care required for a patient will involve substantial costs which should preferably be met from their own resources rather than those of their carers.

An Enduring Power of Attorney allows you to make proper arrangements for the management of your financial affairs should this eventuality happen to you by authorising someone to sign documents on your behalf if you become incapable. The person you nominate can do almost everything that you can do yourself. They can sell your house, write cheques, change your investments, make gifts and otherwise deal with your assets as he or she sees fit. It is a very powerful document.

You should nominate someone who you can rely upon to act in your best interests; this should be someone who is beyond the influence of others. Clients often ask one of our solicitors to act as attorney for them either solely or together with a member of their family. An Enduring Power of Attorney can only be validly made when you are still capable; it is then stored with your Will until needed (if ever).

When no Enduring Power of Attorney exists the Office of Care and Protection, which is a division of the High Court, can appoint a Controller who is usually a relative. We can help you obtain the necessary reports and prepare the relevant application to the Court.

If you require assistance in this area please contact Darren Rainey.