A Power of Attorney is a formal document appointing a trusted person(s) (called an 'attorney') to manage your affairs in the event of your absence, illness or incapacity.
It's the only way of ensuring your affairs are dealt with by someone you trust if-for whatever reason- you're unable to look after them yourself.
Without a Power of Attorney, no one will have that authority unless they're given it by a court. This means your spouse, civil partner or cohabiter may have no legal authority to help you when you most need it.
Examples of things your attorney could help with:
- Opening a bank account
- Paying bills
- Arranging insurance
- Consenting to medical treatment
Powers to deal with personal affairs are often granted to close relatives or friends. The same is true of business and financial powers, however these are also sometimes granted to solicitors.
You can appoint more than one person to act as your attorney, and you can appoint substitute attorneys to act if your original choices cannot. You should appoint people you trust, who know you well and who will be able to make informed decisions about your affairs.
It's up to you who your attorney(s) will be, and how and when they will help you, and this will all be detailed in your Power of Attorney.
How it works and what it costs
If you're in Scotland, we can help you arrange your Power of Attorney. Our legal team are experienced in drafting Powers of Attorney to accommodate a wide variety of circumstances, and will be happy to act as your attorney should you wish.
We charge £300 +VAT to complete the standard documentation for a Power of Attorney. If you require something more complex, this may increase. There is also a fee of £77 payable to the Scottish Court and Tribunal Services for each Power of Attorney.
A Power of Attorney usually takes around twelve weeks to complete. In urgent cases, this can be greatly reduced.