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Amendments To The Mental Capacity Act To Ensure Validity Of Lasting Powers Of Attorney Made Electronically

Type: Press Releases,

Topic(s): Children & Families,


The Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) has introduced amendments to the Mental Capacity Act (MCA) in Parliament on 6 March 2024 to make clear that all electronic Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs) certified between 14 November 2022 and 4 January 2024 are valid.

 

2         Section 12A(1)(a) of the MCA requires that the electronic LPA clearly state on its face that it is intended to be a deed by the donor. Even though the significance and effect of an LPA are clearly explained on the electronic LPA document, it did not expressly state that it is a deed. Thus, it is not in compliance with the provision in the MCA. Approximately 87,000 electronic LPAs certified between 14 November 2022, when the Office of Public Guardian Online system was launched, to 4 January 2024 are affected.   

 

3        MSF would like to apologise for this omission by the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG). The omission was discovered in October 2023, and the assessment of the implications and required rectification was completed in December 2023. MSF then took immediate corrective action, and electronic LPAs certified on or after 5 January 2024 now include the required statement (see Annex for added statement). LPAs made through the hardcopy process are not affected.

 

4        To remove any uncertainty as to the validity of the electronic LPAs certified from 14 November 2022 to 4 January 2024, the Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill will retroactively validate these LPAs. The affected donors do not need to re-make their LPAs, and no action is required by members of public.

 


 

Annex: Additional statement added since 5 Jan 2024