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Who’s involved and how will people know about my choices?

Who’s involved in making an Advance Decision (Living Will) and a Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Welfare?

You can make an Advance Decision (Living Will) with just yourself and a witness. It’s also a good idea to talk to your GP about your Advance Decision.

You need to following people to make an Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Welfare (LPA):

  • at least one person to be your attorney
  • a witness
  • a ‘certificate provider’ (someone who signs the form to check that you understand what you’re doing and that nobody is putting pressure on you to make the LPA)
  • up to five people who will be notified when the LPA is sent to be registered (this is optional)

You don’t need to use a solicitor to make an Advance Decision or an LPA.

How will people know that I’ve made an Advance Decision (Living Will) or a Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Welfare?

An Advance Decision (Living Will) and a (LPA) are both legally binding, but you need to make sure that anyone involved in your care is aware that you’ve made one. You can do this in different ways.

Advance Decisions (Living Wills)

There’s no central register of Advance Decisions so you should give a copy to your GP, those close to you such as family members and friends, and anyone else involved in your care.

You can give a copy to your local hospital and some Ambulance Trusts are happy to record that you have one. You can also carry a Notice of Advance Decision card in your wallet or wear a MedicAlert bracelet.

Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Welfare

Once an LPA has been registered, the Office of the Public Guardian records it on a national register. People can then apply to search the register to find out if you have an LPA, however this can take up to ten working days.  For this reason, it’s a good idea to let your GP, those close to you such as family members and friends, and anyone else involved in your care know that you have made an LPA.