The Importance of Having an Enduring Power of Attorney

 

Most of us have a current Will, but do we know who will manage our affairs if we become incapacitated?

The preparation of an Enduring Power of Attorney (EPOA) is often something that gets overlooked, but the consequences of not having one are worse than you may think!

If you, or a loved one becomes incapacitated suddenly without a EPOA (and this can happen at any age), your financial affairs will be managed by an administrator appointed by the State Administrative Tribunal.

In practical terms this means that a statement of accounts, outlining income and expenditure, will need to be provided by a family member to the Tribunal on an annual basis for a period of 5 years.

Extensive supporting documentation needs to be submitted with the accounts in every case.

These documents include all bank statements, copies of notices for rates & taxes and insurance for property, copies of motor vehicle registration & insurance, and the list goes on!

In fact, copies of all supporting documents for individual items and payments over $400 are required.  The process is extremely time consuming, and of course this just adds to the stress that family is already experiencing due to the incapacity of their loved one.

If you have not already done so, we strongly urge you to contact us, or your legal advisor, for advice on the preparation of an Enduring Power of Attorney.