Office of the OPG Updates Online Service to Allow Preferences & Instructions to be Viewed by Other Organisations

by Joanne Chapman

4 March 2024

The Office of the Public Guardian (‘OPG’) is a government body which polices the making and registering of Lasting Powers of Attorneys (‘LPAs’). Since July 2020, the OPG has provided its “Use an LPA Service.” This provides organisations (such as DWP, banks or energy providers) with the ability to view an online summary of an LPA.

The benefits of using this service are as follows:

  1. Organisations can check LPAs are legally valid and then download a copy of the summary for their records;
  2. Using this service makes LPAs far more quickly and easily accessible; and
  3. This service removes lengthy delays caused by requesting documents via post.

Since this service was introduced in July 2020, users have complained that organisations were unable to view the ‘preferences’ and ‘instructions’ sections contained within their LPAs. These are important sections where the donor can give their attorneys notice of their preferences or set out specific instructions.

These sections not being available online meant that organisations had to request a complete copy of the original LPA via post to enable the details to be verified.

To rectify this issue, donors and attorneys are now able to provide a secure access code to an organisation which will enable them to view a scanned image of the preferences and instructions section of the LPA.

Given that registering LPAs with the OPG can take up to 5 months (if there are no issues, if there are it can take substantially longer), this is a positive step forward to reduce delays and make the process more accessible and user-friendly.

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