Are you Retired - Do you have a Power of Attorney?
You work hard all through your life and when you get to retirement age, it is almost time to forget about your responsibilities and to begin living a little. Your children have probably moved away, you are more than likely mortgage free and that pension that you have been paying into all of your life is now paying dividends. In your mind, now is the time to take it easy, buy that car you always wanted, travel the world and sort out your Power of Attorney.
Ok, the last one in that list might have been a million miles away from your actual thoughts but as you are retired, you are being urged to consider putting a Power of Attorney in place before you really begin to start enjoying your retirement years and that pension that you have.
If you ensure that you have this crucial future-planning document in place, it will ensure that the Attorney that you have nominated will have the power to step in and assist you with your affairs at any point should you fall ill or lack the mental capacity to deal with it yourself. The message at this moment in time is to do it now before it becomes too late.
Staggeringly, there are hundreds and thousands of retirees in the UK who are happily drawing down their pension who have not put a Power of Attorney in place. This is an alarming finding that is sure to have repercussions at some point for many. This is an issue that has, in fact, grown in size since the Government got rid of rules compelling people to purchase an annuity at retirement. Therefore, the number of people choosing drawdown over annuities has doubled, giving them sole responsibility over managing their income once they are in their retirement years. If this gap continues to grow, then by 2025, almost 1.8 million retirees could be at risk.
Now is the time to do something
Illness can happen at any time and when you reach the later stages of life, risks such as Alzheimer’s become a serious reality. Currently, there are around 900,000 people in the UK living with dementia, yet this is going to increase to beyond a million by 2025 and double that by 2051. However, only around 22% of people who have decided to move into drawdown since the pension reforms have registered a Power of Attorney.
So, when you consider the figures relating to Alzheimer’s and the figures relating to the number of people who won’t have a Power of Attorney, it could mean that there are a lot of retirees who have nobody to take control of their financial affairs at a time when it really counts.
It might not be a nice thought but you need to plan for every eventuality, especially when it comes to your health, your Will and your finances. Your health can deteriorate at any time, so now is the time you should consider registering a Power of Attorney before it is too late.