Lasting Power of Attorney Health and Welfare

A Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) deals with your wishes relating to future medication, treatment, care and perhaps where you may live.

This can include permissions on a wide range of issues that relate to your personal health and your welfare.

As with all LPAs you must make a number of important decisions about who is going to be appointed and what powers to grant or restrict.

You have to make a choice about who is to do what and then they can do and can’t do on your behalf.

You will need to decide:

  • who is to be your attorney or attorneys
  • If more than one attorney are decisions to be made jointly or are some decisions to be made jointly
  • What type of decisions can and can’t be made by them. In particular you need to make a decision about whether you attorney has the power to make decisions or not concerning life sustaining treatment. This is a major aspect of the Health and Welfare LPA.
  • If you want to give guidance about things you would like or not like e.g. to stay living in a certain town or area
  • Can you attorneys be paid for their service
  • Whether to appoint any replacement attorneys and at what point

You then should consider the option of having up to five people notified if and when your LPA is sent in for registration. This can be an important safeguard which allows any of these people to raise concerns with the OPG about the activation of the LPA.

These people to be notified are often family or close friends that know you and see you on a regular basis.

To complete your part of the LPA you have to sign and date it in the designated section in front of a witness who then needs to sign and date that they acted as the witness.

NB. Neither the person(s) to be notified nor the witness can be an attorneys or replacement attorneys that you have picked for your Lasting Power of Attorney.

One important difference between the two types of LPA is that, unlike the LPA Property and Financial Affairs the LPA Health and Welfare can only be used after you have lost capacity.