Creating Lasting Power of Attorney When You Have Dementia
When you’re at the point where dementia has impacted the ability to make decisions for yourself about your property, possessions, and finances, or about your care, you need to appoint someone you trust to make those decisions for you. And the sooner after your diagnosis you make the decision, the better, because you’ll be able to relax knowing that the person involved is the right one.
Appointing a person as your attorney involves downloading a form from the government’s website and then asking a number of people to fill it in. There are sections for a donor, attorney, certificate provider, and witness. Here’s a look at who these people are:
Donor: This can be anyone over the age of 18 who appoints an attorney to look after his affairs on his behalf. A GP may need to assess whether someone with dementia has the mental capacity decide to appoint an attorney.
Attorney: This is the person (or persons) chosen to look after the donor’s affairs.
Certificate provider: The donor chooses this person, invariably a professional and usually a doctor, to complete a specific section on the lasting power of attorney form that confirms that the donor was mentally fit to decide the attorney and was not under pressure to do so.
Witness: The witness signs and dates the form to confirm that both the donor and the attorney completed the form in his presence.