Make a lasting power of attorney (LPA)

All about LPA

A lasting power of attorney (LPA) is a legal document that allows you (the 'donor') to appoint one or more people (the 'donee') to help you make decisions on your behalf.

Making an LPA gives you more control over what happens to you, if you ever lose the mental capacity to make your own decisions.

A lack of mental capacity could happen due to:

  • advanced dementia
  • a mental health illness
  • a coma
  • unconsciousness caused by an illness or medical treatment.

The LPA only goes into effect you lose mental capacity and your condition has been verified by a registered medical practitioner.

 
You must be 21 or over and have the mental capacity (the ability to make your own decisions) when you make your LPA.

There are 2 types of powers:

  • personal welfare
  • property and affairs

In the event that you lose mental capacity, your donee(s) will represent you in making decisions for your personal welfare, your property and affairs or both.

How to make a lasting power of attorney

To make a lasting power of attorney, you must:

  • be at least 21 years old
  • have the mental capacity and ability to make your own decisions
  • not be an undischarged bankrupt if you wish to make an LPA for property and affairs matters
 
You must register your LPA with the Office of the Public Guardian for it to be legally valid.

The person(s) you choose to make decisions on your behalf must also agree to be your donee(s).

Personal welfare powers

Use this LPA to give your donee the power to make decisions about things like your:

  • daily care decisions, for example washing, dressing, eating
  • medical care
  • living arrangements, for example moving into or out of a care home
Property and affairs powers

Use this LPA to give your donee the power to make decisions about money and property for you, for example:

  • accessing your bank account to pay for your care
  • paying bills and taxes on your behalf
  • handling your property
  • investing your money
  • making monetary gifts on your behalf

If you do not make an LPA and subsequently lose your mental capacity to make certain decisions, the Mental Capacity Act requires someone to apply to the Court to either:

  • make the specific decisions for you, or
  • appoint one or more persons to be your deputy to make 'personal welfare' or 'property and affairs' decisions for you.

This process will take a longer time and involve more cost due to administrative fees.

Appointing a donee

Your donee needs to be 21 years of age or older. They could be:

  • a relative
  • a friend
  • your husband, wife or partner
  • a licensed trust company for property and affairs matters only (applicable for LPA Form 2)

In LPA Form 1, you can appoint up to 2 donees, as well as an additional replacement donee.

When choosing a donee, think about:

  • how well they manage their own affairs, for example their finances
  • how well they know your healthcare and financial wishes
  • whether you trust them to make decisions in your best interests
  • whether they can handle the responsibility to make decisions for you

You must appoint someone who has the mental capacity to make their own decisions.

 
To make sure that your donee(s) know your healthcare preferences well, you should also make an advance care plan (ACP) and engage them in ACP discussions.

Read more about a donee's responsibilities to help you choose your donee.

You can choose to give your donee(s) powers to decide matters about:

  • your personal welfare
  • your property & affairs
  • both your personal welfare and property & affairs
 
You cannot choose someone who is legally declared as bankrupt to be your property & affairs donee.

If there's more than one donee

If you're appointing more than one person to be your donees, you must decide whether they'll make decisions:

  • jointly - this means that all your donees have to agree on the decision and decide together
  • jointly and severally - this means that your donees can make decisions separately on their own or decide together with the other donees

You can also choose to let your donees make some decision powers 'jointly', and others 'jointly and severally'.

 
Donees who are appointed to act jointly for a type of decision power must all agree on the same decision, or they cannot act on your behalf.

You are advised to appoint donees who agree and know your preferences well. This will safeguard your donees from possible conflict when they have to make decisions on your behalf.

Replacement donee

When you make your LPA, you can nominate other people to replace your appointed donee(s) if at some point they cannot act on your behalf anymore.

How to do your own LPA?

To start making a lasting power of attorney (LPA), you can:

  • download and print the LPA form to fill it up personally
  • use My Legacy's LPA-ACP tool as a guide to help you complete the form online

You (the 'donor') will need to sign on a hardcopy of your LPA form. You will also need the signatures of the following people on paper:

  • your donee(s)
  • the witness(es) for your donee(s)
  • the LPA certificate issuer.

You must then register your LPA with the Office of the Public Guardian for it to be legally valid.

Decide on the type of LPA Form

There are 2 types of LPA forms:

  • LPA Form 1
  • LPA Form 2 (you will need to hire a lawyer to complete LPA Form 2)

LPA Form 1

LPA Form 1 grants general powers to one or two people (the 'donee') who will make decisions on your behalf when you lose mental capacity.

 
Application fees for LPA Form 1 has been waived for Singapore citizens until 31 March 2023.

LPA Form 2

LPA Form 2 is for applicants who want to:

  • appoint more than 2 donees and/or more than 1 replacement donee
  • grant specific or customised powers that are outside the scope of LPA Form 1 to their donee

You will have to engage a lawyer to help you complete the annex to Section 4 of LPA Form 2. The annex to Section 4 of LPA Form 2 has to be drafted by a lawyer.

 
It costs $200 for Singapore Citizens to make an application with LPA Form.

Signing the forms

You need to sign the forms before you register your LPA with the Office of the Public Guardian.

They also need to be signed by:

  • your donee(s)
  • the witness(es) for your donee(s)
  • an 'LPA certificate issuer', who confirms you're making the LPA by choice and you understand what you're doing
Find an LPA certificate issuer

The LPA certificate issuer can be:

  • a medical professional accredited by the OPG
  • a registered psychiatrist
  • a practising lawyer

You can find a suitable LPA certificate issuer from the list of Top 10 most visited LPA certificate issuers.

 
The above accredited medical practitioners will charge a fee ranging from $25 to $80 for the certificate issuing service.
Register a lasting power of attorney

Download the forms and print them out.

Registering your LPA.

When you've made your lasting power of attorney (LPA), you will need to register it with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG).

 
For an LPA to be valid, it must be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian.

The OPG will notify you after they have received your application. They will verify your documents and ensure that your application is in order. Thereafter, there will be a mandatory waiting period of 3 weeks before the LPA is registered.

The whole process takes around 45 working days, if there are no mistakes in the application.

When your LPA is successfully registered with the OPG, you will be able to view an electronic copy of your registered LPA by accessing OPG's e-services portal with Singpass.

How to register

Submit your completed LPA application to the OPG by post

 
Office of the Public Guardian
20 Lengkok Bahru
#04-02 Family @ Enabling Village
Singapore 159053
Application fee

If there are application fees involved, the OPG will contact you for payment and other details after receiving your completed LPA form by post.

 LPA Form 1LPA Form 2
Singapore Citizens$0
(fee of $75 is waived until 31 March 2023)
$200
Singapore Permanent Residents$100$250
Foreigners$250$300

If there are application fees involved, the OPG will contact you after receiving your completed LPA Form. They will send a message with payment details to the email address listed in your LPA Form.

Online payment can be made with your NETS, debit or credit card through the OPG's e-Services portal.

What happens if I wish to change the donee?

You can make changes to your lasting power of attorney (LPA) even if it's been registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG), as long as you still have the mental capacity to make decisions.

If you want to remove or change your donee(s)

You will need to revoke your registered LPA and make a new one.

If your donee's details change

You must inform the OPG if either you or one of your donees has changed their:

  • name - by marriage or deed poll
  • address registered in their NRIC
  • contact number

You can visit the OPG's e-services portal to update the particulars.

Alternatively, you can download and complete the Change of Particulars Form

Submit the Change of Particulars Form with the relevant supporting documents (copy of deed poll for change of name, copy of updated NRIC for change of address) by post to the OPG.

 
Office of the Public Guardian
Email: enquiry@publicguardian.gov.sg
Hotline: 1800 226 6222
Address: Office of the Public Guardian
Ministry of Social and Family Development
20 Lengkok Bahru
#04-02 Family @ Enabling Village
Singapore 159053
Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 5:30pm

Revoking my LPA.

You can cancel or revoke your lasting power of attorney (LPA) even if it's been registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG), as long as you still have the mental capacity to make decisions.

 
Before you cancel or revoke your LPA, you will need to let your donee(s) know about your decision to do so and inform them of this change.

You need to send the OPG both:

Submit the documents to the OPG by post.

 
Office of the Public Guardian
20 Lengkok Bahru
#04-02 Family @ Enabling Village
Singapore 159053

If you're revoking your LPA without making a new one, you will need to submit the documents to the OPG in-person during office hours:

 
Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 5:30pm (excluding public holidays)
Cancellation fee

It costs $25 to cancel or revoke a registered LPA.

Payment can be made by:

 

Situations when your LPA will cease.

In your lasting power of attorney (LPA), you would have appointed donee(s) who have the decision powers to decide matters about:

  • your personal welfare
  • your property and affairs.

If your appointed donee(s) die or lose mental capacity, they will no longer be able to act on your behalf for matters involving your personal welfare, and property and affairs.

If you have appointed your spouse as your donee, he or she will lose their decision powers for your personal welfare, and property and affairs, in the event that a divorce or annulment happens (unless provisions were made in the LPA otherwise).

For property and affairs matters, your appointed donee will also lose his or her decision powers if they:

  • become bankrupt
  • are a licensed trust company that has liquidated or is under judicial management
If your donee loses his or her decision powers

For matters about your personal welfare, and property and affairs, your appointed donee(s) may lose decision powers due to any of the above reasons.

If one of your appointed donee loses his or her decision powers, your LPA will end if:

  • you did not appoint a 2nd donee with the powers to act 'jointly and severally' in your LPA
  • you did not appoint a replacement donee in your LPA

If there is no surviving donee or replacement donee in your LPA, you must inform the OPG and send them:

  • a copy of their death certificate (if applicable)
  • a copy of the medical report stating that the donee has lost mental capacity (if applicable)
  • a copy of the divorce / annulment papers (if applicable)
  • the original registered LPA (if applicable)
  • all certified copies of the LPA
  • a return address where your documents can be sent back to
 
Office of the Public Guardian
20 Lengkok Bahru
#04-02 Family @ Enabling Village
Singapore 159053
If your donee is removed by the Court

Any relative of the donor can report a donee and apply to the court to lift an LPA. The Court has the power to lift the LPA if the donee:

  • is found to have behaved in a way that goes against his authority
  • uses fraud or undue pressure to persuade the donor to make the LPA
  • does not act in the donor's best interests (for example, abuse or neglect)

If a donee abuses his or her power, the donee may face severe penalties (e.g. fine or imprisonment, under section 42 of the Mental Capacity Act).

If you die

Your LPA will end automatically when you die. Your affairs will be looked after by your executors or personal representatives from that point, not your appointed donee(s).