Carers Week is an annual campaign to raise awareness of caring.
This week has been National Carers Week, a time to recognise the value that carers bring to our communities. We should also recognise the challenges carers face and how important it is to support them. Imagine how challenging it might be to care for somebody elderly or with a health condition, then throw in a global pandemic and all that comes with it, to spice things up a little.
Carers Week 2020 is undeniably exceptional; whilst many carers have been in their caring role for months or years, many people in the UK now find themselves carers for friends, neighbours and relatives due to the impact of Covid-19 on the vulnerable. According to carersweek.org, there are 6.5 million carers in the UK at the moment. And that will only count those individuals who actually recognise themselves as carers.
In a bid to do what I can to support Carers Week, I wanted to highlight a topic which, hopefully, will help people who are carers or know carers.
I know that a lot of my Solicitor contacts will agree that a Power of Attorney is a vital arrangement for everybody to have in place. I’d argue that, right now, it’s more important than ever.
What’s a Power of Attorney?
It’s a legal document that lets you appoint one or more people to help you make decisions or to make decisions on your behalf (gov.uk). A Power of Attorney for Property and Affairs relates specifically to your assets and finances. This means that someone can carry out certain tasks as if they were you.
If you are caring for someone, it might be appropriate for them to consider a Power of Attorney. This means that one or more trusted individuals will be able to act on their behalf, be it paying a bill or dealing with tax affairs, changing energy tariff or opening a savings account online.
Those who require care may struggle to get some of these tasks done and unless the correct documents are in place, their carers may find themselves facing a brick wall if they try to help.
If you would like to know more about overcoming these problems using a Lasting Power of Attorney, GOV.uk offers a great starting point.
At Three Counties we’ve added our voices to the wall on the Carers Week website – let’s all help to make caring visible.
To everybody out there caring for someone else, be it permanently or temporarily during these unprecedented times, thank you.