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Power of attorney

What is a power of attorney?


A power of attorney is a legal document where one person (the donor) gives someone they trust (the attorney) the right to make decisions on their behalf and in their best interests.

 

There are different types of powers of attorney – lasting power of attorney (LPA), general (or ordinary) power of attorney and enduring power of attorney (EPA). Find out more and other terms we use, on our frequently asked questions page.

 

Benefits of a power of attorney

It's never too early to set up a power of attorney, it can save time and money if you become mentally incapable of managing your own affairs and need someone to look after your affairs.  It's important for anyone, regardless of age, who has finances and assets to protect if they become unable to make decisions for themselves. A power of attorney can only be set up when you still have mental capacity.

 

If you lose mental capacity and haven’t appointed someone as an attorney, one of your friends or relatives would have to apply to the Court of Protection (COP).  The COP will appoint a deputy to manage your affairs and make decisions on your behalf. This is called a Court of Protection order which can be time consuming and expensive.

Follow the steps below to set up and register your lasting power of attorney (LPA) with us

Step 1 - apply for an LPA


You can apply for an LPA online on the Government website , or a solicitor can help you do this. Unfortunately we can't do it for you. The LPA application form will capture attorney details and any restrictions on how they can act on your behalf.


You can appoint one or more attorneys to act on your behalf, and specify and restrict how they do this. 


You'll be able to apply for a Health and Welfare LPA or a Property and Financial Affairs LPA. We're only able to accept the Property and Financial Affairs LPA.


For more information, see our frequently asked questions.

Step 2 - register an LPA with the OPG


The LPA will then need to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) before your attorney(s) can register the LPA with organisations like us and start making decisions for you. The OPG will charge a registration fee (currently around £82).

 

It can take around 10-12 weeks to register an LPA with the OPG.


The OPG will send you the paper document but you can also arrange for this to be accessed by organisations online, which means you don't always have to give the actual document to them. The OPG can let you know how to do this.

Step 3 - register the LPA with us


When you've registered your LPA with the OPG, you'll need to register it with us (and any other banks and building societies you have accounts with). We'll always ask you and your attorneys to provide us with:

 

  • the original or certified copy of the POA document (for information on how to certify, see our frequently asked questions).
  • a complete attorney registration form - you can download one here
  • identification for you, the donor, and your attorney(s) if you don’t already have an account with us. For ID and certification information, go to our frequently asked questions page.

If you’re opening a new savings account with us, please complete and return the account application form. You can return your form in branch or by post. 

 

If you've set up an LPA online with the OPG (only applies to new LPAs), we'll need the valid LPA digital access code so that we can view the summary of the document online. We can accept the LPA digitally, as long as it's been registered in England and Wales and doesn't contain any specific instructions.

Step 4 - how attorneys manage your accounts


How an attorney manages and transacts with your account(s) depends on the terms and conditions of the account(s), and any restrictions there may be in the LPA.

 

The attorney can carry out transactions:

  • at a branch
  • by post
  • via Telephone Services 
  • using Online Services.
If your attorney(s) is already a member with us and registered for Telephone and Online Services, they won’t need any additional Security Details. They’ll be able to manage your account over the phone, and view your accounts online on their ‘My Accounts’ page (depending on your accounts' terms and condtions).

Find out more on our frequently asked questions page

Useful contacts

Our specialist team 
0800 587 4525
Monday to Friday 8am-7pm and Saturday 9am-2pm

 

Office of the Public Guardian 
0300 456 0300 

Court of Protection
0300 456 4600 

Age UK
0800 055 6112
The Age UK website has very detailed guidance and advice if you’re not sure about your next steps.

Write to us

You can post the attorney registration form to us, along with any other documents we need: 
 

Coventry Building Society 
PO Box 9
High Street
Coventry 
CV1 5QN

In branch

 

We can help you fill in an attorney registration form, or you can drop a completed one off in branch, along with any other documentation we need.