Frequently Asked Questions
Elderly Client Matters
This answers some of the commonly asked questions that clients have. If you have a question that is not covered in the list below, then please let us know.
A Power of Attorney allows you to give authority to another person (the attorney) to handle your finances and/or make health and welfare decisions on your behalf. You must have mental capacity to give the power. It is important that you instruct a Solicitor to draw up this document for you. If you do not appoint a solicitor you face a higher risk of an ineffective document. You could even face additional fees or become a victim of fraud or coercion.
The Court of Protection supervises and makes orders for the management of property and financial affairs of people who are mentally incapacitated. This will only be when they have not made an Enduring or Lasting Power of Attorney. The court can also make welfare and medical decisions, where necessary. We, as your solicitors, can assist in the application to appoint a deputy. We also help you to get appropriate orders from the court to deal with assets as well as making a will or gift for the person who lacks mental incapacity. We can also act as a Professional Deputy if required.
A Living Will can be drawn up by a solicitor to make an advance directive of what medical treatment you want or do not want in the event you are later unable to communicate your wishes.
Many people believe that by giving away their wealth, they can avoid paying for care. Any proposed gift needs careful consideration of the benefits, risks and implications on any future liability for care. It is dangerous to make a gift without getting the right advice as you may find that you are denied state funding at the time you most need it.
Solicitors for the Elderly was founded in 1996 and set out to be a specialist group to help, support and make a difference to older people. It has now grown into a national organisation of over 1500 lawyers all committed to its founding principles. It is a not for profit organisation to meet the needs of its members, so that they can provide good quality legal advice to older and vulnerable clients, their families and carers. SFE endeavours to help members of the public find accredited SFE members who best suit their needs.
SFE is committed to:
- Raising awareness of legal issues affecting older and vulnerable clients
- Delivering high quality training and best practice to its members, so that they can give high quality advice to their clients
- Being a Centre of Excellence for members to keep them informed of the latest developments and knowhow
- Building relationships with key statutory and voluntary bodies, agencies, charities, housing, health and social care providers, the financial services sector and other related organisations who are interested in the wellbeing of older and vulnerable people
- Raising the standards for people working in this area
- Providing input into legislation and policy changes, contributing to policy debates
- Being the first port of call for older and vulnerable people looking for legal advice.