LPAsPaying Fees to an Attorney

18 February 2022by Chris Rattigan-Smith

When making a lasting power of attorney, some donors may wish for their attorneys to be compensated for their actions whilst dealing with the donor’s affairs. This is possible to accommodate in the LPA itself, but the exact actions needed will depend on how much an attorneys should be compensated and also whether the attorney is a professional or non-professional. This article will detail how attorneys can be paid for their actions under an LPA.

Reasonable Expenses

All attorneys are able to claim reasonable expenses they incur whilst acting for the donor. This includes expenses such as postage, travel costs and the cost of an accountant preparing annual accounts.

This does not have to specifically mentioned in the Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) itself but could be included should the donor wish.

Professional Attorneys

There is debate on whether a professional attorney, such as a solicitor or an accountant, could be paid a fee for their services if there is no express power included in the LPA. The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) suggest in their PN01 practice note that a professional cannot charge if there is no express power included in the LPA. We would therefore advise that if a professional attorney wishes to charge fees for their services, then a charging clause should be included as an instruction in the LPA.

It is advisable that the professional is contacted to see if they have any preferred charging clause that they wish to be included. If they do not, a standard charging clause could be included. For example, the OPG’s LP12 guidance suggests that the following could be included for a solicitor attorney:

‘I wish my professional attorneys to be paid the standard solicitor rate as set by [state the name of a relevant professional organisation here].’

Non-professional attorneys

If the donor wishes to pay a fee beyond reasonable expenses to a non-professional attorney, this would need to be included in the LPA.

The OPG’s LP12 guidance suggests setting these fees as a yearly payment, and provides the following examples:

‘Each attorney must be paid a single fee of £1,000 each year, the payment to be made on 20 December each year. The fees will stop when my estate drops to £[fill in amount].’

‘I wish each of my attorneys to be paid £ [fill in the amount] per year for their services under this LPA. My attorneys will stop being paid when my money drops to £[fill in amount].’

Should you require any assistance in deciding how a non-professional attorney should be paid, feel free to email [email protected].

Photo by Ibrahim Rifath on Unsplash.

Chris Rattigan-Smith