Daily Mail reports that many thousands of people have been overcharged when applying for Lasting Power of Attorney
We always strongly advise our clients to apply for Lasting Power of Attorney to help minimise problems in the future should their relative lose mental capacity but a recent report by the Daily Mail has revealed that many thousands of people are to get a refund after being overcharged by £89million in legal fees by the government quango.
The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) has admitted that anyone who applied for a Lasting Power of Attorney in recent years has paid far too much; they have recently reduced fees from £110 to £82, suggesting the amount to be given back could be up to £28 per person.
The Ministry of Justice has reported that it will announce the details of how it will refund individuals shortly.
Applying for Lasting Power of Attorney is extremely important because contrary to popular opinion, being next of kin does not legally entitle you to make health or financial decisions on behalf of your relative. In many instances, in order to represent your loved one you will need a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) in place. We advise clients to discuss LPA with their family and loved ones as early as possible in order to make an informed decision. An LPA is only valid if the individual has the mental capacity to set it up and hasn’t been put under any pressure to create it. Once in place this will ensure that financial and health decisions are made by an individual your relative trusts rather than an external team of professionals having to make decisions on what they believe will be in the patient’s “best interests”. We have created two useful guides to Lasting Power of Attorney which can be found on our website.
Our advisers are experts in healthcare funding and in managing care home costs. They often provide guidance on the process of applying for an LPA or Deputyship and, more specifically, how they work within the process of applying for NHS continuing healthcare funding.
For more information, call the Compass CHC team on 0121 227 8940 or contact us
Author: Tim Davies LLB