How to put in place an Effective Health & Welfare LPA as a Trans Client
Posted on 28th December 2023 at 14:11
Any solicitor will tell you that Lasting Powers of Attorney are a must for every client, and this is especially true for trans clients.
In short, a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) allows a trusted individual(s) to step into your shoes in the event that you lose mental capacity, and make decisions on your behalf. With a health and welfare LPA, you can choose someone to make decisions on your behalf relating to your personal healthcare, medical decisions, daily routines, and if you wish to give your chosen attorney the power to make decisions in respect of life sustaining treatment, this can all be done in a health and welfare LPA.
We understand that the needs of trans clients can be complex. Trans clients may feel that their loved ones may not fully support their decision to transition and therefore may make decisions that they perceive to be “best,” rather than reaching the decision that the donor of the power of attorney would feel most comfortable with.
There is an option to include preferences and instructions in a Lasting Power of Attorney, and this can be particularly beneficial in that a transgender man could set out in the LPA his instructions as to whether he would want to take any medication that would usually be associated with women.
A health and welfare LPA for a trans person allows that individual to retain control over future decisions, as at the time of creating the LPA, it is the donor’s decision who he or she appoints as their chosen attorney(s). The client could help to protect their chosen gender identity, and bring peace of mind to their family and friends by clearly stating their preferences and instructions in order to help guide their attorney(s) in their decision making.
The donor’s preferences and instructions can be inserted into the LPA to cover any decisions which they feel strongly about, or which they feel may be contradictory to their family’s wishes. In turn, this may ease any concerns that their family have about getting a decision wrong.
Preferences and instructions can cover a wide range of decisions such as:
- A wish for a private room in a hospital/hospice
- Decisions as to what type of clothing you wish to wear in the event you are no longer able to decide this for yourself
- Personal care preferences
And of course, these are in addition to all of the other benefits which come with putting in place a health and welfare power of attorney, such as the ability to involve those closest to you in the decision making, retaining control as to who makes important decisions on your behalf if you are no longer able to make them yourself, and from a financial perspective, the cost saving of putting in place an LPA initially, rather than having to apply to the Court of Protection for someone to be appointed to make decisions on your behalf, which not only takes away your element of control, but is also time consuming and costly.
The points above are by no means exhaustive, and if there is a specific concern or request that you wish to discuss, please call our friendly and helpful private client team on 0113 200 7480 and we will be happy to assist you.
Tagged as: Wills, Probates & Trusts
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