There may come a time when you can’t manage your own affairs or look after yourself. You might want to give someone else the ability to deal with your health or money and property matters if you have an accident or get an illness, for example. But many companies and banks won’t discuss your business with anyone except you. This is where a Power of Attorney comes in.
A Power of Attorney lets you choose someone you know and trust to make decisions for you about:
- · Your health
- · Your money and property
- · Both of these
You can choose more than one person. Whoever you choose is called your “attorney.” Your “attorney” doesn’t need to be a solicitor – that’s just what they are called. He or she could be a family member, a friend or a solicitor. You can also have a mix of people – a family member and a solicitor acting together for example.
The time to set up a Power of Attorney is now, when you can take your time and choose someone you trust to look after you and your affairs.
Having a Power of Attorney lets you plan what you want another person to do for you in the future, should you become incapable of making decisions about your own affairs.
PoA is a written document which includes a certificate signed either by a solicitor who can practise law in Scotland or by a registered UK medical doctor who holds a licence to practise.
There are 3 types:
- Continuing PoA – gives powers to deal with money and/or property
- Welfare PoA – gives powers to make decisions around health or personal welfare matters
- Combined PoA – gives continuing and welfare powers
More information is available via Office of the Public Guardian (Scotland) and My Power of Attorney in Scotland