Making an enduring power of attorney

You can choose a person (your attorney) to make decisions on your behalf if you are no longer able to in the future, by making an enduring power of attorney. The arrangement must be in writing and must be signed by you and your attorney. The arrangement needs to be witnessed by two other people. It must contain details of the decisions that your attorney will make on your behalf.

There are important legal implications when you make an enduring power of attorney. This means you should think carefully about the types of decisions you want to include in the arrangement and the person, or people, you choose to be your attorneys. It may be useful to discuss this with your loved ones and people you trust.

You will need a lawyer to interview you to make sure you understand the consequences of making an enduring power of attorney. You also will need a doctor or another healthcare professional to assess your capacity. The doctor or healthcare will need to confirm that you had the capacity to understand the consequences of making the enduring power of attorney at the time you executed it. Execution of the arrangement means the date you and your attorney(s) have signed your declarations and had them witnessed.

The enduring power of attorney must be registered with us. You must tell certain people, like your spouse and adult children, about the arrangement. You must also provide them with copies of the arrangement.

You can have more than one attorney and can choose a replacement attorney if one or more of your attorneys are unable to continue in their role for any reason.

Making an enduring power of attorney – step by step

Making an enduring power of attorney takes a number of steps. This includes getting forms completed by different people, including your doctor or another healthcare professional. You may need a person you trust to help you to complete one or more of these steps. You can also discuss making an enduring power of attorney with your lawyer.

We will provide you with the forms and templates you will need to make an enduring power of attorney and to apply to register it with us.

The easiest way to make an enduring power of attorney is by setting up an account on our online portal myDSS and completing an application online. If you cannot access a computer or set up an account online, that is no problem. You can contact us, and we will help you set up your account.

Alternatively, you can complete a paper application form. You can contact us and we can post one to you.

Before you begin

There are a number of steps involved in making an enduring power of attorney. Before you begin the application, you should decide:

  • Who do you want your attorney or attorneys to be?
  • Do you want someone to be your replacement attorney?
  • What types of decisions do you want them to make on your behalf?
  • Are there any decisions you do not want or need help with?
  • What authority do you want to give them?
  • Do you want to pay them?
  • Are there any organisations, businesses or professionals that will want to see a copy of your enduring power of attorney?

Steps to make an enduring power of attorney

This section tells you about the different steps you will need to take if you want to make an enduring power of attorney using our online portal. We are available to assist you and provide information and guidance at every step in the process.

1. Set up your account on myDSS

You can make an enduring power of attorney using our online portal MyDSS at this link MyDSS. To do this, you will first have to set up an account. You can use this account to manage your application. You will also be able to send messages to us or ask us questions.

You can find detailed instructions and watch a video on how to open an account in our resources section of the website at the link Resources sectionClick on the link How to create a light MyDSS account to watch the video.

2. Fill out the enduring power of attorney application

Once you have logged into your MyDSS account you will need to tell us which decision support arrangement you want to make. You can start a new application. When you select the type of arrangement, you should pick enduring power of attorney.

The first part of the application is the enduring power of attorney form. There are four sections in this form:

  • Relevant person details – this is information about you, the person making the enduring power of attorney
  • Supporter details – this is information about the person(s) you are choosing to be your attorney(s)
  • Existing arrangements – in this section, you need to tell us if you have any other existing decision support arrangements
  • Arrangement details – in this section you tell us about the authority you are giving your attorney and the specific decisions you want them to make on your behalf.

If you are appointing more than one person to be your attorney, you will tell us how they will work together to make decisions. You can also tell us whether you want your attorney to receive any payment.

3. Download template forms

After you have filled out the four sections of the form and you are happy with what you have included in your enduring power of attorney, you can save it and download the following forms:

Form

About

Enduring power of attorney template

This is a copy of your enduring power of attorney so far. You will need to give this to your lawyer, to the person assessing your capacity and to your witnesses when you sign the declarations. You can access the sample template at the link EPA arrangement template

Donor declaration form

This is the part of your enduring power of attorney that you sign in front of two witnesses. You will have to confirm that you understand and agree to make the enduring power of attorney. You can access a sample form at the link Donor declaration form.

Attorney declaration form

This is the part of your enduring power of attorney that your attorney signs in front of two witnesses. You can download this form as many times as you need to, depending on how many attorneys you have. You can access the sample form at the link EPA Attorney Declaration Form

Statement of capacity form

This is the form your doctor or another healthcare professional fills in after they have assessed your capacity. You can access a sample form at the link EPA Statement of Capacity Form

Legal practitioner statement

This is the form your lawyer fills in after they have interviewed you about your understanding of the enduring power of attorney. You can access the sample form at the link EPA Legal practictioner statement.

Notice form

This is the form you give to your notice parties to let them know about the enduring power of attorney. You can download this form as many times as you need to, depending on how many notice parties you have. You can access a sample form at the link EPA attorney notice form.

 

4. Take the enduring power of attorney to your lawyer

You must take your enduring power of attorney to a lawyer. They will interview you to ensure you understand the implications of making the enduring power of attorney. After they have interviewed you, they will complete the Legal Practitioner Statement.

5. Sign the declarations in your enduring power of attorney in front of your witnesses

You and your attorney(s) must sign the declarations in your enduring power of attorney in front of two witnesses. Both witnesses must be over 18 years of age and at least one of them must not be an immediate family member of you or your attorney.

If you are physically unable to complete the declaration, someone else can sign this on your behalf. They must do this in front of you and your witnesses.

From this step, you have 3 months to send your enduring power of attorney to us

6. Take the enduring power of attorney to your doctor or another healthcare professional

You must ask your doctor or another healthcare professional that you had the capacity to understand the consequences of making the enduring power of attorney at the time you executed it. You can access the list of healthcare professionals that can access capacity at the link healthcare professional. Execution of the arrangement means the date you and your attorney(s) have signed your declarations and had them witnessed. You must give the person completing the assessment a copy of the arrangement and your signed declarations. After the doctor or healthcare professional has assessed your capacity, they will complete the statement of capacity form. You can access a sample statement of capacity form at the link Statement of Capacity Form.

7. Tell your notice parties about the enduring power of attorney

You must tell the following people that you are making the enduring power of attorney and give them a copy, including the signed declarations:

    • Your spouse, civil partner, or co-habitant
    • Any of your children who are 18 years or over
    • Any decision supporters appointed under another decision support arrangement

These people are called your notice parties. You must send the notice form, along with a copy of the enduring power of attorney, including the signed declarations, to each one of your notice parties.

8. Upload completed forms and statements

After you have completed all of the required forms, signed the declarations and notified your notice parties, you can upload the forms to myDSS. You will need to give us details of your witnesses and notice parties at this time.

9. Pay the registration application fee

You must now pay the registration fee for your application before you submit your application. You can also apply to have the fee waived in this section, which means you do not have to pay based on your income and dependents.

10. Submit your application

After completing all of the steps, you can now submit your application to us. We will review the application to make sure you have sent us all of the necessary information and to check that it meets the legal requirements.

After you submit your application

After you submit your application to register an enduring power of attorney, we will review the application and supporting documents provided to check that they meet legal requirements. We will check that you have followed the required steps and that your attorney is a suitable person to support you.

We may need to ask you or your attorney for more information.

We will decide whether to approve or decline your application. If we think we may need to decline your application, we will let you know and give you an opportunity to provide us with more information. You can also ask us to review our decision, or you can appeal it to court.

If we decide to approve your application, we will let you and your attorney know. The enduring power of attorney will not come into effect until your attorney notifies us that you are unable to make one or more of the decisions included in the enduring power of attorney.

Find out more

You can read more about making an enduring power of attorney in our guidance material, which can be found at the link in our Resources section. They include important information about: