Are you thinking about putting in place a Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Welfare? This type of deed is extremely important if a person loses capacity to make decisions for themselves, because it empowers their trusted attorneys to make decisions about their health, medical treatment and lifestyle. For example, your daily routine and matters such as washing, dressing and eating, choosing where are you live, decorating your home or your room in a care home, buying clothes and hairdressing. These decisions are typically much more personal in nature than those dealt with by a Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs. If you wish, you can have different attorneys to act in the two different roles.
Typically, people appoint family members or close friends as their attorneys, although it is also possible to appoint professional attorneys, if you do not have anybody suitable in mind.
What kind of decisions would my attorneys be able to make?
Health and welfare decisions might be about, for example, giving or refusing consent to healthcare, staying in your own home and getting help and support from social services, moving into residential care and finding a good care home and matters such as your diet, dress or daily routine. With this type of Lasting Power of Attorney, your attorneys will only have power to make decisions once you have lost mental capacity and not before.
You will have the important option of choosing whether or not to give your attorneys the authority to give or refuse consent to life-sustaining treatment on your behalf.