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Clarifications on validity of medical report for LPA

Type: Parliamentary Questions

Topic(s): Children & Families


Question

Dr Chia Shi-Lu
MP for Tanjong Pagar GRC

To ask the Minister for Social and Family Development with regard to the Lasting Power of Attorney (a) whether the validity period of doctors' letters certifying the condition of the patient is uniformly accepted by all banks, insurance companies and Government agencies; and (b) if not, whether the Ministry will consider standardising the validity period to reduce inconvenience and hardship for affected families.

Answer
1 A Lasting Power of Attorney can only be used on behalf of a person, if the person has lost mental capacity.

2 If the doctor’s medical report states that this mental capacity loss is permanent, there is no limit on the validity period of the medical report.

3 If the loss is temporary, the validity is subject to the person’s condition, and respective third parties’ due diligence requirements based on their risk assessment. As such, the Ministry cannot standardise the validity period of medical reports stating temporary loss of mental capacity. HDB, insurance companies under the Life Insurance Association Singapore, and banks under the Association of Banks in Singapore would apply a 6-month validity period.