Enduring powers of attorney
What is an enduring power of attorney (EPA)?
An enduring power of attorney (EPA or EPoA) is a legal document that allows you to appoint someone you trust to make decisions about your life, if you can’t. This person is then said to have power of attorney and can be a trusted relative, friend or an independent organisation like Public Trust.
There are two types of EPA:
- Personal care and welfare EPA – in which you appoint someone to make decisions about personal matters, like where you live, and your healthcare treatment.
- Property EPA – in which you appoint a person, or an organisation like Public Trust, to manage financial and property decisions. Their responsibilities can include paying bills, managing bank accounts, and buying or selling assets.
What are the benefits of having enduring powers of attorney?
An enduring power of attorney (EPA) gives you control over what happens later on, in the event that you lose the capacity to take care of your personal or financial matters due to accident or illness.
It can also save time and money, and unnecessary stress on your family, who may struggle to complete simple tasks such as paying bills on your behalf without it. Without an EPA the Family Court may be left to decide about your property and personal matters.
The Protection of Personal and Property Rights Act 1988 (PPPR) is designed to assist and protect adults who, because of incapacity, are no longer able to make or communicate decisions or manage their own affairs and don't have an EPA in place.
Completing these EPA documents is just as important as writing a will. You could think of it like an insurance policy - because it protects you and your loved ones if the worst should happen, but you need to prepare now, to gain that protection.
It’s horrible to think about. But now imagine how stressed and frustrated you’d feel, if you couldn’t even complete simple tasks on their behalf - like paying the bills, or cancelling the Sky subscription.
Unfortunately, this is a reality for many people. Because unless you have powers of attorney, organisations won’t give you information or let you change any existing arrangements for someone else, due to the Privacy Act.
How do enduring powers of attorney work?
You choose when your EPA comes into effect, any special terms and conditions, and who your attorney must report to and consult with when making decisions on your behalf.
Find out more about the role and responsibilities of an attorney.
How much do enduring powers of attorney cost?
We do everything we can to keep our prices reasonable. Our charges vary depending on the services you need. For details please see our fees and charges.