Solicitor speaks out over online attorney powers

SOLICITOR Andrea Cox has joined a number of organisations representing older people to raise concerns around the government's online tool for creating Lasting Powers of Attorney.

Thursday, 22nd December 2016, 5:55 am
Updated Thursday, 29th December 2016, 3:11 pm

An LPA is a legal document that allows a person to appoint individuals to make decisions about care and finances on their behalf, in the event of a loss of mental capacity.

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In May 2014, the government’s Office of the Public Guardian launched its online LPA tool, which it claims allows people to create the documents without advice from a solicitor.

But a new report, published by a coalition of organisations, warns that anyone creating an LPA without taking legal advice faces a significantly higher risk of being left with an ineffective legal document, incurring additional fees, and even becoming a victim of fraud.

Andrea, head of private client at Verisona Law in Portsmouth, said: ‘The prospect of being able to submit an LPA application entirely digitally is extremely concerning, and raises serious questions around the potential for fraud and financial abuse.’