What is the process of appointing a professional?
The process of appointing a professional attorney is very straight-forward. When you are making your LPA(s), your solicitor will ask who you have chosen to name as your attorney(s). At this point, you can ask your solicitor if they or another member of their firm will act in this capacity. At Roche Legal we have a policy that only named directors can act as attorneys, not the firm as a whole.
How much does it cost to appoint a professional attorney?
There will be no additional cost for appointing a professional attorney at the time of making your LPA. However, if your professional attorney is called upon to act for you in the future, they will need to be paid for any work they undertake in that capacity.
When you sign an LPA that appoints a professional attorney, you will agree to a professional charging clause. This clause states that your professional attorney is entitled to charge their usual hourly rate for the time spent acting as your attorney. This full hourly rate will apply whether the attorney is dealing with complicated aspects of your affairs, or whether they are making decisions that could easily have been made by a ‘lay’ attorney.
A professional attorney will usually be authorised to seek payment from any funds they are managing on your behalf.
Appointing a mix of professional and ‘lay’ Attorneys
It’s usually recommended that you appoint either more than one attorney or one attorney and a replacement attorney.
With this in mind, you may decide that you wish to appoint a professional attorney alongside family members or friends. Appointing one professional attorney amongst a total of three, for example, is one way to provide the other ‘lay’ attorneys with the expert support and other benefits that a professional can bring.
Of course, if you choose not to appoint professional Attorney in your LPA, your family members or friends will still be able to seek legal advice from specialist solicitors to help carry out their duties, should they wish to.