We cannot imagine how difficult it is for the family of Michael Schumacher. Following his skiing accident a few weeks ago, the Formula 1 racing driver has been in an induced coma.What if something similar were to happen to you?
Of course your family and friends would be devastated, but it could also have very serious financial implications. If you are incapacitated, nobody, not even your spouse, will be able to access your bank accounts to pay bills. If you are a business owner or investor, nobody can take over the reins and deal with matters on your behalf.
What is the solution?
If you already have a registered Lasting Power of Attorney, you have the solution. Your Attorney(s) can deal with your financial affairs straight away. If you made an Enduring Power of Attorney, it will need to be registered, which will take a few months, but matters will be in hand.
If you have neither, someone close to you would have to apply to the Court of Protection to be appointed as your Deputy. This is an expensive process and one that takes three to four months. In the meantime, your financial affairs are in limbo.
What could you do to avoid this?
Make a Lasting Power of Attorney now! It is not just the old and frail that need Lasting Powers of Attorney. Anyone at any age can have a serious accident similar to Michael Schumacher, or suffer a stroke or other illness. It is far better to have the peace of mind now that should the worst happen, your finances will be dealt with straight away, your family will be looked after and your business should not suffer.
By making a Lasting Power of Attorney now, you can choose your Attorney(s) and can also choose replacements allowing you to plan well into the future. You can choose the people you trust as your Attorneys, which may be your spouse, adult children, a good friend or professionals (e.g. solicitors or accountants) or a mixture of family, friends and professionals.
A Lasting Power of Attorney can also be used when you have the mental capacity but cannot physically deal with matters. Imagine the scenario – you have a skiing accident and break your leg. You have to stay in hospital in Switzerland, but need to deal with a business or financial transaction in person back home in the UK. If you have a Lasting Power of Attorney registered and in place, you can instruct your Attorney to deal with it on your behalf.
A simple solution, which can be done now, to give you peace of mind.