Help with Duties of an Attorney
Our professional and helpful team can help you with Duties of an Attorney
If you have been asked to be an Attorney on someone’s Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA), there are a number of factors you should consider before agreeing. There are a range of duties and responsibilities, set out in the Mental Capacity Act 2005 which you should be aware of and should familiarise yourself with.
As an Attorney, you will be responsible should the donor (that’s the person who you are responsible for) become unable to make decisions for themselves. It is vital that you always act within their best interests and consider their past and present, wishes and values.
There are also a number of principles which need to be kept in mind when acting on someone’s behalf. These are set out in section 1 of the Mental Capacity Act 2005, and are as follows:
Principle 2: A person should be given all the help and support possible to make their own decision before you step in and make it for them. They must have been asked to decide, before their lack of capacity is judged.
Principle 3: Just because someone makes an unwise decision, doesn’t mean that they lack the capacity to make it. We all make bad decisions at some point in our lives.
Principle 4: If decisions are being made on behalf of someone who lacks capacity, they must be in their best interests.
Principle 5: Any actions or decisions made on behalf of someone should have a limited impact on their rights and freedoms.
When making decisions for someone else, we always recommend that you speak to their close relatives, anyone who is caring for them, and any other Attorneys who may have been appointed. This not only helps to share the responsibility for the decision, but also creates a sounding board for the donor’s wishes.
You should also always check whether the donor has the capacity to make decisions themselves. Just because decisions have been made for them in the past, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they still need that service. An example could be where someone has recovered from a brain injury; during their recovery they may have needed assistance, but if they have recovered they could be capable of making their own choices. Additionally, you should remember that different Lasting Powers of Attorneys allow for different decisions over the donor’s affairs. An Attorney listed on a health and care LPA (Lasting Powers of Attorney), cannot make financial decisions, and vice versa.
There are other duties which should also be considered. These include;
• Applying a duty of care when making any decisions
• Carrying out the donor’s instructions (even if you disagree with them)
• To not take advantage of the situation for your own benefit
• To not delegate decisions, unless this has been authorised
• Always act in good faith
• Respect the donor’s confidentiality
• Comply with any directions from the Court of Protection
• Inform the donor and the Court if you intend to give up the role
• Keep accurate and up to date accounts
• Keep the donor’s money and property separate from your own.
If you have been asked to be an Attorney for someone, and you have questions, our team are always happy to chat to you.
We offer legal advice on Wills and Trusts. If you would like to contact us or book a consultation with a member of our team please fill in the ‘Make an Enquiry’ form or call us on: 01795 503839 or email email@example.com
I contacted Jarmans Solicitors (Supriya) regarding an employment issue. They were professional, knowledgeable and efficient. I felt fully supported and valued throughout a very difficult period. I would throroughly recommend Jarmans Solicitors and would not hesitate to use them again if needed. The service was exceptional. Thank you.
Omar Behardien Omar Behardien
‘’I've been dealing with Jarmans solicitors over a litigation issue to protect my financial interests within a property I bought with a so-called friend which I owned the highest percentage within the property. The solicitor called Jeanine has been very helpful and supportive and advised me I have a very strong case to stop my so-called friend from taking half my house away from me. I am very happy with the work which has been carried out so far. I
‘’We first contacted Christopher Kennett in April 2020, regarding a boundary dispute as you can appreciate these things if not dealt with correctly can quickly turn nasty. Christopher came to the site so that he completely understood the situation and was not relying on photographs, which can in some cases be misleading. The personal treatment we have received throughout the last year has been fantastic we rely completely on his advice, and put our complete trust in him to always
‘’Great representation in court following road traffic charges - Matt Davis and Jeanine Harry. Very many thanks for your services. Excellent result on the day.’’