Our at-a-glance guide to powers of attorney highlights the differences between them and when they should be used.
Questions Ordinary Power Enduring Power Lasting Power 
Usable if donor has capacity? Yes Yes Yes
Usable if donor has lost capacity to deal with their financial affairs?  No

Yes if registered with Court of Protection (COP) or Office of Public Guardian (OPG). No if unregistered

Yes (must be registered irrespective of capacity)
Unregistered document acceptable to you? Yes Yes (if donor still has mental capacity) No
Registered document acceptable to you? No (no such thing) Yes Yes
Proof of registration N/A Pre 30.9.2007 COP - Post 1.10.2007 OPG stamp OPG stamps and/or word 'validated' shows on photocopy (on original word 'validated' is punched holes in document which show on a photocopy). In older LPA's there may also be a holographic sticker although these are not now used by the OPG.

Does Registration mean donor no longer has capacity and should no longer operate account with attorney

 

N/A Yes No

Photocopy acceptable?

Yes as follows: Each page of Copy certified by: donor (who has capacity) or solicitor or Fellow of Institute of Legal Execs Yes as follows: Each page of Copy certified by: donor (who has capacity)or solicitor or Fellow of Institute of Legal Exec's or Official Copy supplied by OPG or COP  Yes as follows: Each page of Copy certified by:donor (who has capacity) or solicitor or Fellow of Institute of Legal Exec's or Official Copy supplied by OPG 

Foreign powers acceptable

 

English / Welsh OP only  English / Welsh EPA only  English / Welsh LPA only 
 Notes Should be for short term use only.  Make sure all parties signed Power prior to 30th September 2007. If after this date it is NOT VALID  Possible to have a Personal Welfare LPA - this does not authorise dealings with finances. Make sure it is for Property & Affairs or Property & Finances. 

About the author

Tracy Ashby Senior Associate

Tracy is an experienced private wealth solicitor specialising in estate and wealth planning including advice on, and drafting of, wills and trusts, and inheritance tax and succession planning.