Lasting Powers of Attorney, your Farm and your Business24-Jul-2019

By Adele Bebbington-Plant,  Associate Solicitor, Wills, Trusts & Estates

It is common for people to consider how they would like their personal estate and their business to be dealt with after they die.

However, it is just as important to make provision for your affairs during your lifetime in the event that you temporarily or permanently lose the ability to make decisions yourself.

If you run a business, particularly a farming or agricultural business, it is essential that you have the correct provisions in place. This will ensure that not only your personal affairs, but also your business can continue to run and be managed effectively if you are unable to do so. Your livelihood and the livelihood of your family and employees could be severely impacted if you do not have provision in place.

Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA’s) are documents which give a person or persons, who are appointed by you, the power and authority to make decisions and run your affairs on your behalf during your lifetime.

There are two types:
A Property and Financial Affairs LPA, which gives your Attorneys authority to deal with and manage your property and finances;
A Health and Personal Welfare LPA, which allows your Attorneys to make health, medical and welfare decisions on your behalf. This can also extend, if you wish, to giving or refusing consent to life-sustaining treatment.

An LPA gives your attorneys wide and considerable powers. Your attorneys must therefore be trustworthy and have the appropriate skills to make decisions on your behalf.

If you run a business, it may be appropriate to make more than one property and finances LPA – one to cover your personal affairs and one to cover your business affairs. The people with the relevant skills and knowledge to run your business may not be the appropriate people to handle your personal affairs and vice versa.

Making an LPA now would provide you with the reassurance that your affairs will be looked after by someone you know and trust in the future. It would also avoid the huge delay, expense and intrusion of an application for a Deputyship Order if you were to lose capacity without having put an LPA in place.

For more information please contact a member of our Wills, Trusts & Estates Team on 01244 356 789 or email info@cullimoredutton.co.uk

Please note: This is not legal advice; it is intended to provide information of general interest about current legal issues.