Most people are now aware that by putting into place a Lasting Power of Attorney (“LPA”) you can ensure that if you become unable to manage your own financial affairs because of mental or physical incapacity, you have chosen a person who you trust to look after your financial affairs
This person is known as an attorney and under a Financial Decisions LPA would be able to help you with your personal finances such as operating your bank accounts, buying and selling your property or other assets and claiming benefits on your behalf.
Unless expressly excluded, your attorney would also be authorised to run your business. However, this may not be practical if, for example, your attorney is your spouse/partner and their time and attention is taken up caring for you. Your attorney may also have a busy life themselves working and looking after a family so that they do not have the time, or indeed the expertise, to run your business.
As a business owner, you may have purchased Key Person Insurance to cover events following your death however, this will not assist with the practicalities of running your business if, as the key person, you become ill or injured and are unable to work or take decisions.
It is a good idea therefore to consider making a separate LPA in respect of your business and appointing attorneys who have the time and expertise to specifically run your business.
There are particular issues to be considered dependent upon whether you are a sole trader, partnership or limited company. It is therefore important that you obtain legal advice specific to your business to consider the impact of ownership documents, partnership agreements, company Articles and shareholders’ agreements before making a business LPA.
To make an appointment to talk to one of our experienced solicitors Zoe Dale, Nicola Thomas or Amanda Oakes, about making a business and/or personal Financial Decisions LPA, please telephone 01527 912912.