Enduring power of attorney for property and finance
If you need someone to make decisions about your property and finance on your behalf, we can help you put the appropriate arrangements in place.
Choose who will take care of your financial affairs
In the event of an illness or injury, or as you get older and find it too much to maintain, you may be unable to take care of your property and finances on your own. Or, you may simply want to put that responsibility in someone else’s hands. Choosing an attorney under your Enduring Power of Attorney for Property to make decisions and act on your behalf, will give you the peace of mind that this will all be taken care of.
A Property EPA includes instructions for when it can take effect - either immediately (while you are mentally capable) or at a point in time when you are deemed incapable. You can appoint more than one property attorney and choose whether they must act jointly or individually. Alternatively, you may want them to have the flexibility to act both jointly and individually.
This type of appointment means that the attorneys can only act together, each with the knowledge and approval of the other/s. Unfortunately, this type of appointment means that if one attorney is unable to act for any reason the other attorney cannot act alone.
This type of appointment allows the attorneys to act separately, without the approval of the others. However, the other appointed attorney must be consulted. This type of appointment also enables the donor to revoke the appointment of one attorney, and leave the other in place.
Jointly and severally
This type of appointment allows the attorneys to act together and separately, as required.
This will ensure that if something happens to one of the attorneys, which causes the joint authority to cease, the remaining attorney can still act under the several authority provision.
Once activated, your attorney is responsible for managing your finances and assets based on any conditions set out in your Property EPA. The attorney has a legal responsibility to act in your best interests and to consult with you where practicable.
Who should you choose?
The ideal property attorney is someone reliable who you trust to manage the property and financial side of things, and who has the time and capacity to do so. Think of them as “the responsible one”.
Your property attorney may be an individual or a trustee corporation such as Public Trust. We’re highly experienced and have a team of professionals on hand to ensure everything runs smoothly and efficiently.
With Public Trust as your property attorney, you can depend on us to take the pressure off your loved ones, so they can spend their time with you instead of dealing with paperwork. Let us take care of things and make it a little easier on you and the ones you love. Find out more about our Personal Assist service here.
When your EPA gets activated, there are two paths depending on who you’ve chosen as your attorney.
If Public Trust is your property attorney
We step in to manage your property and financial affairs under our Personal Assist service. We will act in accordance with your valid instructions and any conditions you set out in the EPA, helping as much or as little as needed. There are costs associated with this - see our Personal Assist service for more.
If someone other than Public Trust is your attorney
They have the same legal obligations they must fulfil when managing your property, which are outlined here.
If there is no attorney
When someone loses the mental capacity to manage their own financial affairs — and they haven’t already got an enduring power of attorney (EPA) for property in place — you can apply to the Family Court to appoint a property manager to look after matters for them. Public Trust can also be appointed to uphold these responsibilities.
Property managers look after the financial affairs of a person who is deemed mentally incapable. The property manager will usually be a family member, friend, or trustee company.