After an LPA has been signed, it could be several months or years before the document is registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG), or before they even need to be used. During this time the circumstances may change, and the donor may decide that he/she no longer wishes for one or more of their attorneys to act on their behalf, or an attorney may decide they no longer wish to act. In exceptional cases, an attorney may believe that another attorney is no longer trustworthy and does not wish that attorney to act.
The solution to these issues can depend on the exact circumstances at the time, such as if the donor has capacity or not, or if the LPA is registered.
If the donor still has the capacity to make decisions, and the LPA is unregistered, they have two choices. They could write a Partial Deed of Revocation to keep with the LPA that specifically states the attorney(s) who are to be removed from the LPA. Possibly the clearer and more cost-effective option would be to create and sign a new LPA to remove the attorney(s) in question. The donor could then destroy the original LPA due to it being unregistered.
If the donor still has the capacity to make decisions, and the LPA is registered, they can write the Partial Deed of Revocation as mentioned above and send this, with the original LPA to the OPG who will revoke the appointment of the attorney(s) stated in the Deed. A more costly and time consuming option is available, where the donor can revoke the LPA entirely by submitting a Deed of Revocation with the registered LPA to the OPG. The donor can then create and register the new LPA.
If an attorney no longer wishes to act as an attorney and the LPA is unregistered, they must complete an LPA005 form, otherwise known as a disclaimer form, and send this to the donor to keep with the LPA. When the LPA is being sent to the OPG for registration, the donor must send this form to the OPG with the LPA. If the donor has the capacity to do so, they can create and sign a new LPA if they believe this to be a clearer option.
If any attorney no longer wishes to act as an attorney and the LPA is registered, they would need to complete multiple LPA005 forms. They must then send a completed form each to the donor, all other attorneys, and the OPG.
If an attorney no longer wishes another attorney to act for the LPA, if the donor still has capacity this is not a decision that attorney can make as it is up to the donor. If the donor does not have capacity, then there are options the attorney has.
If the LPA is unregistered, the attorney can complete a COP 7 form and provide this to the OPG when submitting the LPA for registration. This must be accompanied by any supporting evidence or statements as to the reasons for the objection. This will then be submitted to the Court of Protection for assessment, and they will decide whether to partially revoke the LPA or not.
If the LPA is registered, the attorney will need to seek legal advice from a Solicitor and make an application to the Court of Protection to partially revoke the LPA.
It must be noted to the clients that if the LPA appoints the attorneys to act jointly, an attorney stepping down, or the Court of Protection removing an attorney would invalidate the entire appointment, therefore if there are no replacements, the LPA will be invalid. If the attorneys are appointed as jointly and severally, then this removes that issue.