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UK government published guidance relating to the ‘View an LPA’

STEP (The Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners) is an internationally recognised professional body for trust and estate practitioners. It aims to ensure its members deliver the best possible service to their clients by providing training and education and setting and upholding standards for practitioners.

STEP explains purpose of View an LPA

The UK government published guidance relating to the ‘View an LPA’ service on 10 May 2024. This is a secure online service that allows companies and organisations to check the information contained within lasting powers of attorney (LPA) in England and Wales.

Purpose of View an LPA

An LPA will usually be verified by someone checking the paper document. View an LPA enables users to see the details of the LPA without the attorney needing to provide the paper version.

The service provides an online summary of all the information needed to confirm that the LPA is valid and up to date. There are several benefits:

  • The essential information is summarised in just one online page.
  • There is no risk that the paper document will get lost in the post.
  • You can download the PDF and keep a copy for your records.
  • A posted LPA could take days to arrive, be returned and nothing can be done in the meantime.
  • The online service facilitates quick action, such as for immediate medical treatment.
  • Any changes made to the LPA will be actioned quickly with the online service and visible much sooner.

Only LPAs registered on or after 1 January 2016 can be verified on View an LPA.

Information provided

View an LPA shows you any information you may need to allow an attorney to make decisions on behalf of the donor. The details include:

  • The donor’s details – name, address and date of birth;
  • The attorneys’ details – how many there are, their names, addresses and dates of birth;
  • How decisions are made by the attorneys;
  • The donor’s choice on life sustaining treatment, if the LPA is for health and welfare;
  • Any instructions and preferences written by the donor, which could affect or even disallow what the attorney intends to do and
  • Whether the LPA is still valid and registered.

However, you can only use View an LPA to access LPAs registered in England and Wales. It does not show LPAs registered in Scotland, Northern Ireland or abroad

How to use it

To see the LPA, you need a 13-character LPA access code, supplied by the attorney or donor. You need to enter the donor’s surname and the code. If the LPA is found, you will see the full name of the donor and the type of LPA. You can then check the details and that the type of LPA is appropriate for the decision that needs to be made.

If the attorney does not know how to create an access code or has given you an invalid one, you can ask them to go to GOV.UK and search for ‘LPA access codes’.

You must give the name of your company or organisation. This is recorded along with the date so that the donor and any other attorneys can see when and how the LPA is being used.

This article was first written by : Emily Deane TEP, Technical Counsel and Head of Government Affairs at STEP