The importance of having an LPA in place is one of my favourite (or least favourite depending on your take) topics. Clients hear about it all the time from me. And, with unfortunate regularity, I’m proved right. So, here’s a cautionary tale to encourage you to take care of that crucial piece of admin if you haven’t already got it in hand.
I’m afraid the full article is behind a paywall on the Telegraph website but here’s the gist…
A woman wrote into the paper’s consumer champion to ask for help. Her husband had vascular dementia with Alzheimer’s and had been placed in a care home after an extended hospital stay. The care home in question was listed as ‘requires improvement’ and was undoubtedly having a negative impact on the gentleman.
Before the decline of his health he had completed applications for two lasting powers of attorney. The first LPA, for property and finance, had been granted swiftly. The second, the crucial health and welfare LPA was held up in the registration process.
Because she didn’t have the all-important documentation, the woman had no control over where her husband received care and was stuck with seeing him in a ‘hellhole’ home and being chased for weekly payments of £1,400.
Thankfully, in this case, the Telegraph’s consumer champion was able to apply pressure to the Office of the Public Guardian and the LPA was finally registered. The woman was hugely relieved and able to move her husband to a new, more suitable, home.
In their apology over the situation, a spokesperson for the OPG said: “Our plans to modernise LPA applications are currently going through Parliament and will make the process simpler and quicker for customers.” With average wait times of 20 weeks for LPAs to be registered, this will be a welcome change if it comes through.
To anyone reading this who is yet to sort out their LPAs: PLEASE get it sorted now, before you need them and are relying on them for your welfare. PLEASE!