The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) launched an outreach programme to raise awareness of the Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) among POSB’s 4 million customers.
The LPA is a legal instrument which allows adult Singaporeans to plan ahead while they still have the capacity to do so. Singaporeans can appoint a person(s) they trust to decide and act on their behalf if they should lose the capacity to manage their own affairs one day. This is allowed for under the Mental Capacity Act.
In collaboration with POSB, OPG will bring awareness of the LPA to POSB customers through online platforms as well as mailers and the screening of the ‘Ah Ma’ video at all POSB branches. Talks on the LPA will also be included in a series of public engagements which POSB is organising with the North East Community Development Council (CDC) to raise financial literacy. The objective is to heighten awareness among Singaporeans to include the making of an LPA among their suite of plans to secure their future and that of their loved ones.
Said Mr Richard Magnus, Chairman of the Public Guardian Board, "We are heartened by POSB’s support to promote the importance of the LPA to their customers. Given POSB’s network and customer base, this outreach will contribute significantly towards raising public awareness of a legal instrument that will serve the best interests of every Singaporean in our rapidly ageing society. I hope more corporations and organisations will also come forward to help bring this important message closer to the community, for the benefit of even more Singaporeans".
Since the Mental Capacity Act came into effect in March 2010, the OPG has embarked on an active public outreach programme through public talks, seminars, regular LPA workshops and participation at events. To date, more than 4,000 individuals have made their LPAs.
"POSB is pleased to take the lead in this collaboration with the OPG to increase Singaporeans’ awareness of the LPA. Having served generations of Singaporeans, we understand how important it is for people to plan holistically for their retirement. With education, improved quality of living and longer life expectancy, Singaporeans have been setting aside more resources to fund their active ageing lifestyle. However, it is equally important to make an LPA to safeguard our own interests in the event we suffer from diminished mental capacity", said Mr Derrick Goh, Head, POSB.
About the Mental Capacity Act
The Mental Capacity Act (‘MCA’ or ‘the Act’) enables adult Singaporeans to appoint proxy decision makers or donees to act on their behalf in the event they should lose mental capacity. The appointment is made through a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) which has to be registered with the Office of Public Guardian (OPG). Donees can be appointed to act in either of two broad categories, or both – personal welfare or property & affairs matters. The Act also provides safeguards to protect the vulnerable person and his caregivers. More information is available from OPG’s website: www.publicguardian.gov.sg.
About the Lasting Power of Attorney
The Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document which allows a person who is at least 21 years of age (‘donor’), to voluntarily appoint one or more persons (‘donee[s]’) he trusts to make decisions and act on his behalf if he should lose capacity to make his own decisions. An LPA has to be registered with the OPG.
About the Office of the Public Guardian
The Office of the Public Guardian, a division of the Ministry of Social and Family Development, supports the Public Guardian whose primary role is to strengthen protection for the interests of persons who lack mental capacity within the framework of the MCA.