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Reptile Investment Reluctance Raises Concerns
- AuthorWilliam Ware
It is not often that a law report from the Court of Protection provides a chuckle for practising lawyers. This is precisely what happened this week however for a group of lawyers at Hampshire based law firm Warner Goodman LLP!
The frivolity occurred when a story came to light about an attorney who had decided to invest her Aunt’s fortune in the rather unconventional industry of a reptile farm! The consequences of this were that the Court of Protection decided that this was not a good project to invest in, and subsequently the attorney was removed at the request of the office of the Public Guardian.
William Ware, Private Client Partner at Warner Goodman LLP commented, “Although this was a rather unusual case, some serious points arise and consequently the Judge took the opportunity to give some helpful advice to attorneys on the duties they have in regards to investment. In broad terms the general feeling is that attorney’s investment duties are very similar to those of a trustee, and perhaps the key point to learn is about the importance for careful investment advice. Consulting with an independent financial adviser is perhaps the safest route for attorneys to follow when looking to invest.
“Thousands of Lasting Powers of Attorneys were registered with the office of the Public Guardian last year,” continues William. “The fear is that many attorneys are entering into this obligation without understanding the true nature of their responsibilities and the risks they are potentially being exposed to.”
William concludes, “Provided they have taken proper financial advice and invested the assets in accordance with general principles of sound investment with independent investment advice they will be able to sleep at night.”
If you are looking for legal advice relating to LPAs contact William at Warner Goodman LLP on 01329 288121 or visit the website www.warnergoodman.co.uk.
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