Only 14% of Brits have established a lasting power of attorney – a person who can make decisions on their behalf if they are incapacitated through accident or illness, Direct Line Life Insurance research has found.
More than a third (38%) are unaware of what lasting power of attorney’s are, leaving the state in charge of determining who can make decisions on their behalf were they to lose mental capacity.
Over 80% mistakenly believe that without an LPA in place, their loved ones would automatically be allowed to make decisions about their medical treatment on their behalf
Jane Morgan, business manager at Direct Line Life Insurance, said: “The idea that at some point we may not have the capacity to make our own decisions can be distressing and is not something any of us want to think about.
“However, many people would want legal confirmation that their loved ones can make decisions in future on their behalf if something were to happen to them.
“Important decisions such as, when to move someone into a home, or sell their property, cannot be taken lightly and it is important that people plan for these situations however uncomfortable it may be. Having a lasting power of attorney in place can avoid additional distress at an emotional time.
“When planning for the future, people should not only consider drafting a lasting power of attorney, but also consider having financial provisions in place for their families. Life insurance and critical illness cover can help look after loved ones financially, paying out a lump sum, to help deal with every day money concerns such as household bills and childcare costs.”