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Duties of an Attorney

January 12, 2023
Wills, Trusts and Probate

January is the time for New Year resolutions but one that may not be at the top of the list for people acting as Attorneys is “I need to ensure I am carrying out my role and duties as an Attorney correctly”

If you have been appointed as an Attorney under a Lasting Power of Attorney or Enduring Power of Attorney you have a number of important responsibilities. At some point you will probably have to make difficult decisions about the person you are acting as Attorney for (the donor) regarding their finances and health/care, this is dependent upon which type of Power of Attorney they have.

If you have been appointed under a Lasting Power of Attorney (Property & Financial Affairs) or an Enduring Power of Attorney you may have to deal with the donor’s property and finances. If you have been appointed under a Lasting Power of Attorney (Health & Welfare) you may have to make decisions about their care and welfare when they can no longer make those decisions for themselves.

Those decisions could include (but are not limited to):-

  • selling & buying property
  • dealing with pensions
  • dealing with investments
  • opening/ closing bank accounts
  • dealing with HMRC re tax affairs
  • arranging care

As an Attorney there are some basic rules that should be followed:-

  • you must always act in the donor’s best interest
  • help the donor make their own decisions where possible
  • act in accordance with the terms of the Power of Attorney
  • keep the donor’s money separate from your own
  • keep accounts of all transactions
  • not to benefit yourself by taking advantage of your position
  • not to make large gifts without the consent of the Court

Being appointed as an Attorney should not be taken lightly. If you require further information then please contact us.

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