£90m to be repaid to thousands with lasting powers of attorney

Date: 06/09/17 Author: Sarah Murphy

£90m to be repaid to thousands with lasting powers of attorney

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) is to refund nearly £90m to thousands of people who have been overcharged when taking out Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA) in the last four years.

The errors occurred between April 2013 and March 2017.

In its annual report, the MoJ said: “More people have been registering for lasting powers of attorney in recent years. Increased volumes coupled with greater efficiencies in processing applications have resulted in fees being charged above the operational cost of delivering the service, without our having exercised the power provided by legislation to allow us to do this.

“Using that power, we have from 1 April 2017 set the fees for applying to register lasting powers of attorney and enduring powers of attorney, at a reduced level.

“Alongside this reduction in fees, we will also introduce a scheme for refunding a portion of the fee to customers who may have paid more than they should have during the last four years. Full details of the scheme will be announced in due course.”

It means the fee for applying to register an LPA or an Enduring Power of Attorney has been reduced from £110 to £82. The fee for resubmitting an LPA for registration has been cut from £55 to £41.

One of the main reasons for the popularity of Powers of Attorney is that they offer you protection in case your health deteriorates to such a point in the future that you are no longer able to make decisions for yourself.

An LPA helps prevent these problems because it enables you to nominate someone in advance to make decisions on your behalf if you ever lose the ability to do so yourself through illnesses such as dementia.

The property and finance LPA allows you to appoint someone to look after your financial affairs and the personal welfare LPA lets you grant an attorney authority over such matters as health care and the kind of treatment you receive.

If you would like more information about the issues raised in this article or more information about Lasting Powers of Attorney, please contact Sarah Murphy on 01524 416315 or sarahmurphy@jwksolicitors.co.uk.

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