John James is a very successful event organiser. He is self-employed and employs 15 people in the business. He is married to the lovely Jennifer James, his childhood sweetheart, and they have 3 beautiful daughters at private school. John pays for the girls (who all wish to be famous one day) to attend after school drama classes which they love. John and Jennifer have also arranged a dream holiday at Disney World, Florida when the girls break up for their summer holidays. John has paid the deposit for the holiday and the balance needs to be paid in 3 weeks.

John has always controlled the finances for the household and paid the bills and given Jennifer an allowance for food and for her personal spending needs.

It is February and John is working very hard on his summer bookings. It is cold and icy under foot and John is keen to finish early so that he can spend some quality time with Jennifer and the girls. As he rushes out of the office to the carpark he slips and falls to the ground fracturing his skull as his head hits the concrete. An ambulance is called and John is whisked away to hospital. Jennifer and the girls rush to the hospital and are advised by the surgeon, who has just operated on John, that he has brain damage and is unlikely, ever again, to have full mental capacity. Jennifer and the girls are devastated.

John and Jennifer had considered having Lasting Powers of Attorney prepared by their solicitor but had, for whatever reason, always put off doing so. They had also considered doing them online. Their solicitor had advised John that he also needed one for his business should anything untoward happen to him.

The consequences of John not having taken any action are:

  • His successful event business will struggle to survive – his 15 employees and outstanding bills (including HMRC for tax and VAT) cannot be paid.
  • John’s business and personal bank accounts cannot be accessed.
  • Jennifer is struggling to make ends meet as she has limited funds of her own and is contemplating removing the children from private school. The girls no longer attend the after school drama classes.
  • The balance of the holiday cannot be paid and has been cancelled.
  • Jennifer is applying to the Court of Protection so that she can be given authority to make decisions for John.
  • Jennifer and the girls are totally devastated by what has happened to John and to add to this stress are now being chased for payment of outstanding business and personal bills.


If John had a Lasting Power of Attorney in place Jennifer and the girls would be suffering less.