WHAT IS AN EPA ?
An EPA is a legal document that appoints an attorney to make decisions on your behalf in relation to your welfare and|or property and financial affairs in the event that at some time in the future, you lack the capacity to make these decisions for yourself. A statement signed by a medical practitioner and a solicitor to the effect that the donor (the person making the EPA) has capacity at the time of executing the forms and that the donor understands the nature and effect of the EPA. The statement from the solicitor should also state that the donor is not acting under undue influence. The attorney must agree to act and must sign the EPA.
WHO SHOULD YOU APPOINT?
You should appoint somebody you trust to act as your attorney. If it is intended that your attorney is to manage your financial affairs then the appointed person should be someone who is capable of dealing with your financial matters.
HOW MANY ATTORNEYS SHOULD YOU APPOINT ?
It is a good idea to appoint more than one attorney. In effect, this will ensure that there is no breach of the responsibility with which the attorney is empowered.
REGISTERING AN EPA
The attorney must register the EPA in the High Court in the event that the donor is becoming or has become mentally incapable. Notice of the application must be served on the donor and others. The attorney must obtain a medical certificate to the effect that the donor is incapable of managing his or her affairs.
The Court assumes a supervisory role. Application can be made to the Court for directions with regard to the management and disposal of property. If the EPA has been registered it cannot be revoked without the permission of the Court.