Business Lasting Powers of Attorney - the Essential Business Insurance You Need!
Posted on 4th May 2022 at 15:31
A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legal document that lets you (the ‘donor’) appoint one or more people (known as ‘attorneys’) to help you make decisions or to make decisions on your behalf.
It is important for any business owner to consider what would happen if you were unable to make important company decisions.
A business LPA allows a business owner to appoint a person, or people, to make decisions in the best interests of the organisation should they be in another country, involved in an accident or suffer from a medical condition that means they are now incapable of making decisions.
In such circumstances, who would authorise the payment of bills, sign cheques, or pay salaries?
Is a business LPA right for you?
• Sole Trader
As a sole trader; your business doesn’t have a separate legal identity from you. Therefore, a business LPA will be necessary for the business to continue to trade.
If you are in a partnership with several partners, the partnership agreement may provide a provision for what should happen should one of the partners lose capacity. If such provision exists, it may already adequately provide for the continuity of the business.
However, if you are in doubt about the provisions in the partnership agreement or feel that a business LPA is necessary, then you should ensure that the wording of the LPA doesn’t conflict with the existing provision in the agreement.
• Director of a Company
If you are a director of a company, the company’s Articles of Association may provide for the termination of a director’s appointment should they lose capacity. This is usually put in place in order to protect the company’s interests.
If you are a sole director of a limited company, then the Articles are unlikely to deal with the termination of director appointment. In such circumstances a business LPA would be necessary.
What if you don’t make a business LPA?
A business LPA is an essential part of any crisis planning for a company or organisation. In the absence of business LPAs, the organisation is potentially exposing itself to risk as bank accounts may be frozen and paying creditors or suppliers may be impossible.
If you do not have a business LPA, and lose mental capacity, it would be essential that an application to the Court of Protection is made to appoint a deputy to manage your affairs. This process can be costly. The proposed deputy makes the application themselves and therefore you lose the choice to appoint your preferred attorney and you may end up with someone undesirable managing your business and/or personal affairs. It can also take more than six months before a Deputy is appointed, during which time your business could run into financial or management problems.
It is therefore important to have a business LPA in place to ensure business continuity and that your own wishes for are followed should you become incapacitated.
Contact us on 01423 564551 or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange your free initial, no obligation consultation with a specialist.
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