There is much confusion surrounding the registration and use of enduring power of attorney (EPA) forms. This is not helped by the fact that many bank staff have no idea what they are and do not know when a form has or hasn’t been registered. Here is a basic guide to the most important points about registering EPA’s : An EPA is different to an ordinary power of attorney in that it must be registered at the Court of Protection when the donor is starting to lose the ability to manage their own financial affairs. Understandably people object to the amount of money that they have to pay to register the form (£220 at time of writing). At any point the PGO can request accounts from the attorney to check that everything is running smoothly; again there is a charge for this. (It may or may not help people to know that the Public Guardianship Office (PGO) still are not covering their costs despite the rise in fees over the past two years. This is why there is such a seemingly high charge.) The Court of Protection is there to protect the finances of the mentally unable hence the checks, although again these requests are not welcomed by carers many of whom are coping in extremely difficult circumstances. However, that is the way the system operates and if someone refuses to comply with these rules the PGO can have the EPA cancelled. For further advice and information, please call the legal and welfare helpline on 020 7306 0801 between 2 and 4:30 Monday to Friday.