OPG’s own guidance causing LPA registrations to be rejected

OPG’s own guidance causing LPA registrations to be rejected

A key industry figure has described the government’s lasting power of attorney (LPA) guidance as “[not] fit for purpose”, with professionals encountering issues when registering LPAs due to the wording in the government’s own guidance not being accepted.

Seb Shakh, director at LoveLegal.com, WillSuite and TrustSuite, issued a “warning for those drafting LPAs” on LinkedIn. He said:

“We’ve had a client complain that an LPA would NOT be registered (the first of well over 100,000 through our software) because the following wording may not be in the best interest of the Donor:

‘My attorneys must continue to make donations and claim gift-aid where applicable to charities which I have previously supported or for which I have set up subscription payments for’.”

Shakh then highlighted how the government’s own wording in their “Guide to making an LPA” would suggest this should not be the case. The guidance states:

“My attorneys must continue to donate to charities that I have supported or for which I have set up standing order payments.”

Five days later, Shakh updated his post to say that the Court of Protection has now agreed to register the LPA with the disputed instruction, though he added a caveat:

“While accepted, with the amount of delays seen at the minute I’d still recommend anyone to disregard the suggested wording [above] in the government’s own guidance and share this with other private client lawyers (WillSuite have and I’m hoping the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) update this too).”

Rather, practitioners should use the SFE (Solicitors for the Elderly)’s wording, he added. The SFE’s wording is as follows:

“It is my wish for my attorneys to continue to donate to charities that I have supported or for which I have set up standing order payments, provided the payments are surplus to my own financial needs, and considered to be in my best interests.”

Shakh ended his post by noting that others have mentioned a similar issue to him due to new recruitment at the OPG. Let us know in the below survey if you’ve seen issues with other instructions:

 

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Jamie Lennox

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