The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) announced On Friday 17th July that they have been working behind the scenes to modernise the Lasting Power of Attorney process. They’ve launched a new online tool to make it quicker and easier for attorneys to use an LPA to support the donor.
What does this new tool do?
Once an LPA is registered, attorneys and donors will be sent an activation key. They are then able to create an online account and use the activation key to make an access code, which they are able to provide to organisations to view an online summary of an LPA.
By allowing attorneys to submit the code to the online portal, this will nearly instantaneously confirm their status as an attorney and allow them to take actions on their loved one’s behalf and provide.
Who can use this service?
Attorneys and donors with LPAs registered from 17 July 2020 will be able to use the online service. The OPG also have plans to open up the service to LPAs registered earlier in 2020 and some from 2019, but have not yet released a date for this.
By replacing the paper-based process, which can take weeks due to documents being requested and copies needing to be posted, means that the speed in which decisions can be made will be drastically quicker.
Despite these changes, existing checks such as confirming whether a person has the legal right to act as an attorney and the powers they hold will remain firmly in place, ensuring that the vulnerable and elderly are still protected from the abuse of an Lasting Power of Attorney.
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What’s coming next?
The OPG have stated that this is only step one in part of a wider transformation to come. With the exception of final documents, Barnet Wills is already a paperless operation and strongly advocates utilising technology to its fullest potential and its many associated benefits. We are ready and waiting for an entirely paperless LPA process.