Understanding EPA: What Happens When You Don’t Have It

Understanding EPA: What Happens When You Don’t Have It

An Enduring Powers of Attorney grants your authorised individual or individuals to act on your behalf and make decisions for you. The EPA becomes active when you become mentally incapacitated, and this authority takes effect relatively permanently. You can request from your lawyer an EPA for property management, personal care, and welfare. The nominated person can sign documents for you, sell your home, or cancel your insurance.

But what happens when you delay getting an EPA, and life happens?

What Happens When You Don’t Have Enduring Powers of Attorney

1. Your family member or trusted person must apply to the Family Court for help.

When you do not want to look after your own affairs anymore or if life takes an ugly turn, and you have health issues affecting your decision-making, your family or trusted person cannot directly act on your behalf. Without an EPA, they cannot access your bank accounts and savings to help defray healthcare costs. Also, they must be lawfully authorised to decide on the appropriate step in your healthcare. Therefore, they must appear in a family court to be appointed as a Manager for your personal care and welfare. Also, the court may appoint the same person or another to manage your property and finances. A family court proceeding is expensive, stressful, and could delay making critical decisions for your welfare. Hence, having your lawyer draft an Enduring Power of Attorney while you can is crucial. Preparing the EPA early on allows you to carefully appoint someone who can act fully well with your best interest in mind.

2. You must go through court proceedings to appoint someone to manage your business and financial affairs while away.

With a property management EPA, your authorised person can access your bank accounts, pay bills, maintain your property, and manage your investments and your business. But without it, you must go through the court proceedings to appoint someone to make decisions on your behalf.

You might think it’s still too early to draft an EPA, but it doesn’t hurt to be prepared. Don’t wait until it’s too late.

At The Law Connection, our experienced lawyers on the Kapiti Coast, can help you with EPAs for property, personal care and welfare. We are here to help you plan for the care ofyourself and your property during unexpected life situations. Call us today for a legal consultation.