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LPAs help you prepare for the future while you are still in good health

The National Audit Office has warned that not enough is being done to tackle the rising problem of dementia.

Ironically, perhaps, the problem is partly due to medical advancements which mean that life expectancy has increased considerably over the last 50 years.

While many people will enjoy extra years of active life, others unfortunately may begin to suffer from age related dementia which affects their mental capacity and prevents them from making decisions about their financial affairs and personal welfare.

Uncertainty about the future prompts thousands of people each year to consider the use of Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA).

These enable you to nominate someone such as a family member or trusted associate to make decisions on your behalf if you ever lose the ability to do so yourself in the future through illnesses such as dementia.

The property and finance LPA allows you to appoint someone to look after your financial affairs and the personal welfare LPA lets you grant an attorney authority over such matters as health care and the kind of treatment you receive.

LPAs should be drawn up with the help of a solicitor to ensure that they accurately express your wishes and protect your interests.

The growing problem of dementia makes it important for everyone to look to their future now while they are still in good health.

In 2007, the Department of Health recognised the scale of the problem and stated that dementia would be treated as a national priority. However, the National Audit Office has now published a report saying that the rhetoric has so far not been matched by urgent action.

The head of the National Audit Office, Amyas Morse, said: "At the moment this strategy lacks the mechanisms needed to bring about large scale improvements and without these mechanisms it is unlikely that the intended and much needed transformation of services will be delivered within the strategy’s five year timeframe."

No one can be sure what the future will bring us in terms of our health but LPAs can at least ensure that our interests are protected should the worst happen.

Please contact us if you would like more information about Lasting Powers of Attorney.

If you wish to make an appointment, or ask us a question please contact us.