​Lasting power of attorney

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05 Nov 2018 | 3 min. read

A lasting power of attorney (LPA) helps you appoint people you trust to act on your behalf if you should lose mental capacity. Learn about the importance of having an LPA and how to go about making one.

Key takeaways

  • Plan ahead with an LPA to safeguard your interests and for peace of mind.
  • Appoint someone you trust to make decisions and act on your behalf should ever you lose mental capacity.
  • A family member is not automatically given the right to make legal decisions on your behalf should you lose mental capacity. This can hinder their ability to care for you.

Many of us actively plan ahead for the future by saving up, investing, and buying insurance. We do this because we want to be sure that we are prepared for a rainy day. We also want to be sure that we don’t inconvenience our family members too much when they care for us in the future.

But how many of us actually plan for the possibility that we may lose our mental capacity?

Losing mental capacity is a real challenge to our physical and emotional well-being, and creates stress for our family members. It is therefore something worth planning ahead for.

What is an LPA?

An LPA is a legal document that lets you (the donor) appoint one or more people you trust to be your donees. They will act and make decisions on your behalf should you lose mental capacity one day.

You must be 21 or over and have mental capacity to make your LPA.

Your donees can be appointed to act in two broad areas: personal welfare, and property and affairs.

What if you don't have an LPA?

If you don't have an LPA and you lose mental capacity, your family member is not automatically given the right to make legal decisions on your behalf. This can hinder their ability to care for you.

As they have not been legally appointed to do so beforehand, they may face difficulties trying to:

  • Make care arrangements
  • Manage your bank accounts and properties
  • Decide how best to use your funds for your day-to-day needs

Your family member will have to apply to Court to be appointed as your deputy, before they are authorised to make decisions and act on your behalf.

Compared to making an LPA, the deputyship application process will not only take longer to complete, but will also cost more.

Which LPA form should you use?

There are two LPA forms, with LPA Form 1 being the most widely used:

LPA Form 1 LPA Form 2
  • A standard version that allows donors to grant general powers with basic restrictions to donees
  • 98% of Singapore Citizens who have made an LPA used this form
  • For donors who wish to grant customised and specific powers to their donees
  • The Annex to Part 3 of this form has to be drafted by a lawyer

Download: LPA forms and documents

Making an LPA using Form 1

To make an LPA using Form 1, download the form and follow these steps:

1. Choose one or more donees

Choose your donees wisely. Choose what decision powers to grant to them. If you have more than one donee, decide how they are to act

2. Get the LPA Certificate issued

See an LPA Certificate Issuer. This critical safeguard ensures that you do not make an LPA under pressure or duress. You can approach a professional from one of these groups to issue an LPA certificate:

  • Accredited medical practitioner
  • Lawyer
  • Psychiatrist

The top 10 most visited accredited medical practitioners charge fees ranging from $25 to $80. Most charge $50 for the service.

3. Submit your LPA

Submit your completed LPA application to the Office of the Public Guardian by post.

Note

Application fees are waived until 31 August 2020. To encourage more Singaporeans to pre-plan, the Office of the Public Guardian has extended the LPA application fee waiver for Singaporeans making an LPA Form 1 to 31 August 2020.

Learn more about LPA

Visit the Office of the Public Guardian website for more detailed information on the LPA, guidebooks and instructions on how to apply.

Last updated on 30 Apr 2019