Video Witnessing of Lasting Powers

A track record of perceptive innovation

Broomhead & Saul lead the field, both nationally and abroad, with its imaginative approach to overcoming the procedural obstacles faced by the elderly and those who are particularly vulnerable to COVID -19’s pernicious effects.

Distance Wills

On 1 May 2020 we set a new national precedent when we enabled a self-isolating client to execute his will in complete safety over the internet using commonly available video conferencing technology to manifest the witnesses’ presence.

On 29 July we set a new international precedent when we managed the first execution of a trans-jurisdictional will using the same video technology, this time for an English national living in Crete, over 2,400 miles away.

Distance Lasting Powers of Attorney

Our legal research and client services development team have also devised a novel procedure that enables clients residing in care home or who are hospitalised or self-isolating to execute a Lasting Power of Attorney during this pandemic without infringing the increasingly restrictive enhanced hygiene and health protection regimes.

Distance mental capacity assessments

We are in the process of devising a procedure for expert clinical psychological assessments under the Mental Capacity Act 2005.  This will not be appropriate for every client needing this service but we anticipate that will be beneficial in approximately 50% of cases.

What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?

A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document that enables an individual (or donor) to appoint one or more persons (known as attorneys or donees) to make decisions on their behalf.

It only comes into effect if the donor loses the capacity to manage their own affairs.

There are two types of LPA:

  • A Property and Financial Affairs LPA
  • A Health and Welfare LPA.

It is entirely up to you whether you have one or both and we have the expertise and experience to advise you appropriately.

Completing a Lasting Power of Attorney at a distance

At Broomhead & Saul our clients best interests are our first concern.  We also insist that our staff take reasonable and proportionate steps to protect themselves (and indirectly their families) from any avoidable risk of exposure to the coronavirus.  This is why we have developed a new and completely safe way of remotely executing a Lasting Power of Attorney using video technology.

We adopt similar procedures with our Distance LPAs to those employed in our ground breaking Distance Wills service, which now have statutory approval.

This allows us to provide a highly bespoke and comprehensive private client service to elderly residents of care homes; to those convalescing in hospital or those who are especially at risk from Covid-19.  We are able to advise prepare and complete their wills and or their LPAs in just two video sessions.

Daring to act

Broomhead & Saul were the first firm in the country to execute a Distance Will for a self-isolating client on 1 May 2020 in defiance of the near uniform disapproval of the legal profession who erroneously insisted on the need for a witness to be physically present, COVID-19 notwithstanding.  Our published research exposed this misconception for what it was.

Our meticulous analysis of the The Lasting Powers of Attorney, Enduring Powers of Attorney and Public Guardian Regulations 2007 and the relevant case law establishes that Distance LPA’s are an entirely valid and proportionate lawful response to the Coronavirus pandemic.  At the time of writing, we are not aware of any other law firm that his had the confidence to research these statutory provisions and to devise this unique solution to the problem posed in this field of practice by COVID-19.

To make an appointment to discuss your needs, please contact:

Taunton Office: 01823 288121

Contact: Dr Nicholas Bevan

or email nicholas.bevan@broomhead-saul.co.uk

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