• Emma Walsh

What does it mean to be an attorney?

You can make decisions on someone’s behalf if they appoint you using a lasting power of attorney (LPA). 

The person who appoints you is called the ‘donor’. You’re their ‘attorney’.  You don’t need any legal experience to act as someone’s attorney.  The types of decisions you make depend on whether you’re a: 

  • property and financial affairs attorney 

  • health and welfare attorney 

Making decisions  Check what you need to do before you’re allowed to start making decisions. 

After you start you must: 

  • follow any instructions the donor included in the LPA 

  • consider any preferences the donor included in the LPA 

  • help the donor make their own decisions as much as they can 

  • make any decisions in the donor’s best interests 

  • respect their human and civil rights 

You must make the decisions yourself - you can’t ask someone to make them for you.  You can get help making difficult decisions. Your decisions can be checked. 

If you’re not the only attorney  Check the LPA. It will tell you whether you must make decisions: 

  • ‘jointly’ - this means all the attorneys must agree 

  • ‘jointly and severally’ - this means you can make decisions together or on your own 


The LPA may tell you to make some decisions ‘jointly’ and others ‘jointly and severally’. 

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For initial advice about Estate Planning including Lasting Powers of Attorney, Wills, Trusts and Probate; call our team on 0203 488 7503, 01992 236 110 or contact us by email at welcome@walshwestcca.com or via our website www.walshwestcca.com and we will help you.