Get help creating legal documents to appoint someone to access your finances, in the case you become incapacitated
If you are looking to plan for the future and ensure that your wishes are respected in the event that you are unable to make decisions for yourself, then an enduring power of attorney is an important legal document to consider.
An enduring power of attorney is usually prepared as part of your wider estate planning, in the case the unexpected happens.
Our power of attorney lawyers and will lawyers at Stephen Wawn & Associates can assist you with this crucial step.
An enduring power of attorney is a legal document that allows you to appoint a trusted person, known as your attorney, to make decisions on your behalf should you become mentally or physically incapable of making decisions for yourself.
Having this legal document in place ensures that your wishes are respected and your assets protected. There are responsibilities that the appointed person legally owes to you while you are incapacitated, to ensure that they are always acting in your best interests.
Anyone over the age of 18 can be appointed. Normally, people appoint a spouse, child, children, close relatives or any trusted person in their life.
Yes, you can appoint multiple people as Enduring Power of Attorney and can set rules about whether they can make decisions individually or whether the decisions must be made jointly. You can also appoint substituted enduring power of attorneys who will act if the person or persons you appointed as enduring power of attorney can no longer act in that role or resign.
The person you appoint can make decisions regarding your financial affairs, including property management, banking, and investment decisions. In New South Wales, an enduring power of attorney cannot make decisions on your personal care or medical treatment.
Some of the things your enduring power of attorney may do include:
An enduring power of attorney can be customised to suit your personal circumstances by specifically including additional powers or putting limits on the decisions and powers with which the attorney can exercise.
For example, the enduring power of attorney can be limited so that the attorney can only start making decisions after a doctor gives a medical certificate that you cannot make decisions for yourself anymore.
No, an enduring power of attorney cannot change a will. The role of an enduring power of attorney is to make decisions on your behalf when you are unable to do so, not to change your legal documents.
Yes, you can revoke an enduring power of attorney at any time whilst you still have capacity.
If you have lost capacity, you cannot revoke the enduring power of attorney.
You are required to notify your attorney in the event you revoke the enduring power of attorney. So you must ensure you contact your qualified power of attorney lawyers at Stephen Wawn & Associates, if or when you choose to do so.
An enduring power of attorney must be witnessed by a qualified witness. They cannot be witnessed by just anybody. Possible qualified witnesses include:
The qualified witness is required to provide specific advice to the person making the enduring power of attorney in respect of the effect of the attorney.
An enduring power of attorney can be revoked by the person granting it at any time while they are capable. It can also expire if the person granting it dies, or if the attorney resigns, loses capacity themself or is removed.
There are two types of power of attorney: general and enduring. A general power of attorney is generally used for a specific purpose or a short period of time. A general power of attorney ceases operation if you lose capacity. An enduring power of attorney continues to be in effect even if you become mentally or physically incapable of making decisions for yourself.
An enduring power of attorney is concerned with financial and property matters, while an enduring guardian is concerned with personal and lifestyle decisions. It is important to consider both options to ensure that your wishes are fully protected.
No, an enduring power of attorney does not have to be registered. However, it is important to keep the original document in a safe place and provide a copy to your attorney.
You must register your attorney with the NSW Land Registry Services, if you want your attorney to deal with any real estate you own in NSW. Registering the attorney also makes it a public record which can make it more easily accepted by some organisations.
Our law firm, Stephen Wawn & Associates, is able to provide you with expert assistance so that you can have peace of mind for your assets and finances in the event you become incapacitated.
Call us for a free no discussion about your estate planning needs
We understand that deciding on a lawyer to help see that your wishes are reflected in your legal documents is a serious personal matter. That’s why we never push you to commit to anything or feel rushed. So you can feel rest assured about meeting us first to see if we are a good fit.
You can call us or contact us through our inquiry form, and we will get back to you for a discussion on your plans for your enduring power of attorney and other estate planning requirements.