Can I act as a Certificate Provider for a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)?
When a person has a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) prepared ('the donor'), it needs to be countersigned by a 'certificate provider', to confirm that the donor understands the LPA, has not prepared it under duress, and has the mental capacity required to complete it.
The certificate provider can be someone who has known the individual for two years or someone who has the 'relevant professional skills'.
This complies with the Office of the Public Guardian's (OPGs) guidelines and Regulation 8 of the Lasting Powers of Attorney, Enduring Powers of Attorney and Public Guardian Regulations 2007.
The guidelines do not specifically mention Fellows, but they have always been considered to have the relevant professional skills. A Probate Practitioner who has been awarded Probate practice rights may also follow the same approach as Fellows. To act as a certificate provider in your professional capacity, you should ensure you have professional skills to judge whether the donor is not forced to sign an LPA. Therefore, it is not limited to Fellows. If you consider you have the relevant skills to act as a certificate provider you should retain as much detail as practically possible about your qualifications and/or experience. This is to demonstrate your suitability to act as a certificate provider, should the OPG request this information.
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