Did You Register a Power of Attorney Between 1st April 2013 and 31st March 2017?

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By Caroline Jones

..…. If so, then you will be able to claim a partial refund of the registration fee. The reason is that operating costs of the Office of the Public Guardian were reduced during this period as more people applied to register a Power of Attorney and the process became more efficient.  As a result the Ministry of Justice reduced the application fee with effect from 1st April 2017 and launched a refund scheme for those who had paid a higher fee during the previous four years.

The application for the refund can be made by the donor of the Power of Attorney or by an attorney but the refund must be paid to the donor. Only one application needs to be made per person even if two Powers of Attorney were registered.  If the donor has since died, an application for a refund can still be made but the Office of the Public Guardian will also need a copy of the Death Certificate, Grant of Probate or Will.

The refund scheme relates to both Lasting Powers of Attorney and to Enduring Powers of Attorney which were registered during the qualifying period. The easiest way to claim a refund is to apply online or by phone, but you will need the donor’s UK Bank details.

The amount of the refund varies from £34.00 to £54.00 per Power of Attorney depending upon when the application for registration was made, so a maximum of £108 per person. You do not need to have precise details, since the Office of the Public Guardian can check these.  You will also receive 0.5% interest.  It is well worth the 10 minutes effort required and it is particularly rewarding to get something back from the Government!

If you have not made a Lasting Power of Attorney then you should consider doing so. You can make a Power of Attorney in respect of your Financial Affairs and/or Health and Care Decisions.  We would be happy to discuss the options available to you and the nature and effect of making a Lasting Powers of Attorney.  We view them very much as insurance policies – you hope that they will never need to be used but they may prove invaluable in the future.