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Do I need an LPA if I have an EPA?

Up until 2008, if you wanted to give powers to someone so they could act on your behalf, you needed to create an Enduring Power of Attorney (EPAs). The general idea of these documents were so you could appoint people that you love and trust, to step into your shoes and carry out jobs for you in the event that you couldn't do so yourself.

After 2008, Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA) were introduced and replace EPAs going forwards. For those who had already set up and signed their Enduring Powers of Attorney, it is not mandatory to replace it with an LPA. You might well think therefore if you already have an Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA) you definitely don't need Lasting Powers of Attorney.

There are two reasons why this might not necessarily be true:

  • Lasting Powers of Attorney offer two different types of power. The LPA for your Property and Financial affairs is pretty much a direct replacement for the Enduring Power of Attorney. The second type covers a person's Health and Welfare and this wasn’t previously available through the Enduring Power of Attorney.

Therefore it is quite common when reviewing EPAs that clients are interested in taking steps so their loved ones are empowered to make decisions about their health. This results in clients having the original EPA in place to cover their financial affairs and then the Health and Welfare LPA to work alongside it.

So just to summarize here. Enduring Powers of Attorney are fine to use as long as it was completed before 2008. Anyone setting up Powers of Attorney from 2008 onwards then had to set up a Lasting power of attorney. And within these lasting powers of attorney there were two types. One, for property and finances, direct replacement for the enduring power of attorney. And then a health and welfare power which is a brand new one. So if you have an enduring power of attorney in place only, you will not have cover for your health and welfare unless you now take out a brand new lasting power of attorney covering the health and welfare. The enduring one can stay in the background running as it is.