Registration of an LPA is the process whereby various forms are signed by the Donor and these are subsequently sent to the Office of the Public Guardian for verification – once registered, the document is valid and can be used immediately.
There are therefore numerous advantages to having your Lasting Powers of Attorney registered – not least the fact that if you were to lose mental capacity it can take many months to gather the necessary GP letter, have the forms correctly signed by your Attorneys and wait for the registration process to completed (Goodwills has seen cases where it has taken the Office of the Public Guardian almost six months to register an LPA).
During this delay, your loved ones may struggles to look after you or you may even have care withdrawn if payment is unable to be made.
It is always better to have a registered Lasting Power of Attorney than an unregistered one but, if a client is elderly or more at risk of losing mental capacity, then this is even more important. We generally carry out registration of LPAs for our clients at the time the documents are drafted but, if clients wish, we are able to only draft the LPAs themselves and leave registration till a later date. This saves clients money although it does mean that if a client rapidly loses mental capacity, there could be a significant delay before the LPA can be registered or lost. There is also the risk of the LPA document being lost, which is why we would always recommend that the clients safely store the LPA documents with us in such circumstances.