Lasting Power of Attorney

Getting long-term support with your finances

A Lasting Power of Attorney allows family, friends or a professional person such as a solicitor to support you in managing your finances. These people are known as attorneys. If a time comes when you are unable to work with your attorneys to manage your money, a Lasting Power of Attorney means your attorneys will be able to take care of your long term financial decisions in your best interests.

You can only arrange a Lasting Power of Attorney while you still have the mental capacity to do so. If you don’t have a Lasting Power of Attorney and you eventually lose mental capacity, a Court of Protection order will be needed.

Already got a Lasting Power of Attorney?

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How does a Lasting Power of Attorney work?

A Lasting Power of Attorney gives someone, known as your attorney, the ability to help you look after your finances. Initially you’ll have joint control of your accounts – either of you can pay bills, transfer money or withdraw cash. Full management of your accounts will only pass over to your attorney if you lose your mental capacity.

Only one card is available on an account. However, if your account comes with a chequebook, you can order more than one chequebook for your attorneys.

Just so you know, the account holder’s cheque book is not cancelled automatically, you'll need to let us know if you want to do this.

There are two types of Lasting Power of Attorney: Property and Financial Affairs or Health and Welfare. You can get one or both, but you’ll only need the Property and Financial affairs Lasting Power of Attorney to manage your Nationwide accounts.

Who can be your attorney?

Your attorney can be a friend, relative or professional person such as a solicitor or accountant. They must be over 18 (in Scotland it's 16), and you can have more than one attorney.

If you do want to appoint more than one attorney, you need to specify whether they are to act:

  • Jointly – this means that your attorneys must all sign for transactions and make joint decisions and they cannot act independently of each other
  • Jointly and severally – this means that your attorneys can make decisions either on their own or with other attorneys.

You can state that attorneys act jointly in some matters and jointly and severally in others.

Each attorney will be required to attend their nearest branch with their ID before they are able to use the account.

What can my attorney do?

You decide what your attorney can do when you make the Lasting Power of Attorney arrangement. This can include:

Cards and chequebooks

If we issue a card to your attorney, we’ll need to cancel yours. That’s because there can only ever be one cardholder. However, you can both hold a chequebook. If you’d prefer to cancel yours, you or your attorney can just let us know.


When a Lasting Power of Attorney is registered with us, you or your attorney can choose which address you’d like all future mailings to go to.

Savings account statements can only be sent to this address.

However, current account statements can be sent to more than one address, so you can choose for you and your attorney, or all your attorneys if you have more than one, to receive them.

Online access

If you’re unable to use online banking, we will consider providing your attorney access.

They’ll need to contact us so that we can talk through and assess the situation with them.

Credit cards

Your attorney can manage your card and make repayments to it.


Your attorney can make payments to your mortgage and help to manage it on your behalf.

A power of attorney agreement allows an attorney to deal with your mortgage and property, unless you have stated otherwise within the document. You or your attorney can talk to us to find out more.

What an attorney isn’t allowed to do

Attorneys are not allowed to:

  • Run up an overdraft on your account
  • Make payments using your credit card
  • Take out a loan in your name.

Safeguarding and security

It's very important that you only give a Lasting Power of Attorney to someone you trust. You need to be sure they will act in your best interests, because you're allowing them to carry out transactions on your behalf for which you will be responsible.

For your protection, we may sometimes refuse transactions or contact the Office of the Public Guardian to discuss them.

Is the Lasting Power of Attorney the same all over the UK?

No, it isn’t. Lasting Power of Attorney differs depending on where you live in the UK.

In England and Wales there used to be an Enduring Power of Attorney – but this was replaced by the Lasting Power of Attorney in 2007. However, if you arranged your Enduring Power of Attorney before 2007, it can still be used to manage your accounts if you lose capacity.

Getting your Lasting Power of Attorney documents

Once you’ve chosen someone to be your attorney, you need to create and register your Lasting Power of Attorney documents. The forms can be complicated, so you may want to ask a solicitor to help you. Once you’ve applied, it takes around 10 weeks to register. 

Find out more

Power of attorney helpdesk

0800 464 30 18 (UK)

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Saturday: 9am - 12pm

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