Since 1974 the number of people aged 75 or over has grown by 89% and they now make-up more than 8% of the population. Whilst an aging population is good, it also means more people are prone to mental health issues.
Mental health issues affect around 22% of men and 28% of women aged 65 or over, and it is now estimated that dementia in the UK is £26.3bn at an average cost of £32,250 per person.
As mental health awareness has grown so has the awareness of Lasting Powers of Attorney with more people wishing to elect who will have control on their behalf in the future should they become unable to make decision themselves.
Growth in LPA registrations
The Office of the Public Guardian was established in 2007 and in that time they have seen more than 2 million LPA’s being registered, with the strongest increase in registrations being in 2016-2017.
The OPG are now aligning their business to cope with the increase in demand for LPAs with the focus on promoting their registration services more widely, improvement of their digital tools and the continued safeguarding of vulnerable people.
The OPG have made a commit to an increase in resource, budget and tools with the intention of delivering a high standard of service for LPAs over the course of the next few years.
It could be argued this level of commitment is reflective of the forecasted increase in demand for LPAs.
An LPA does not need to be part of a Will, it is a standalone document, but can come in the form of two types:
Health & Welfare
This allows your client to choose one person or more to make decisions about things such as:
- the daily routine
- medical care
- moving into a care home
- life sustaining treatment
This type of lasting power of attorney can only be used when a person is unable to make their own decisions.
Property & Financial Affairs
This lets your client chose one person or more to make decisions about money and property, such as:
- paying bills
- collection of benefits
- selling the home
This type of Lasting Power of Attorney can be used as soon as it is registered with the client’s permission.
If you are having conversations with your clients about LPAs, we can support you in delivering the right solution for them. Bear in mind it’s essential for a client to have full mental capacity when they make an LPA, otherwise they could be declared null and void.
For help with answering all your client questions just call the team on 01522 500823.