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Lasting Powers of Attorney registration time in England and Wales now twice the official target of 40 days

  • Extracted for industry news
  • Thursday, 23 June 2022

The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) is currently taking an average of 82 days to register lasting powers of attorney (LPAs) in England and Wales, more than twice the OPG’s official target time, according to a written parliamentary answer from Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Ministry of Justice) Tom Pursglove.


Virtually all LPAs registered in 2022 have taken more than 12 weeks, compared with 1.2 per cent in 2019/20, 34 per cent in 2020/21 and 74 per cent in 2021/22, Pursglove told the House of Commons on Tuesday (21 June 2022). As recently as the 2021/22 financial year, more than 25 per cent of LPA registrations were turned around within 12 weeks and in the previous year, the figure was 66 per cent.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a major contributor to the slowdown, Pursglove said. However, the OPG has hired extra staff, and the number of LPAs being registered each month is now back to what it was before the pandemic, reaching over 70,000 in March 2022. Pursglove said front-line OPG staff are ‘working day and night’ to reduce the backlog.

He also pointed out that a significant part of the processing time is due to the OPG’s statutory obligation to carry out checks on receipt of the LPA before issuing a notice and to wait four weeks to allow for objections before the registration process can be completed.

‘The LPA paper process is currently time-consuming and onerous and needs to be digitally updated in line with other online court systems’, comments Emily Deane TEP, STEP Technical Counsel and Head of Government Affairs. ‘We hope that the OPG’s transition online will eventually make it more efficient, but there will inevitably be teething issues, as there were with the probate system. The significant backlog of applications will remain and may take many months to process.’

If you would like advice about Lasting Powers of Attorney contact Helena Grady on 0114 2588899.  Helena is a Solicitor and member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) with many years’ experience.  She can advise in relation to all elderly client issues.    


Fogwill & Jones Legal Services Limited is an independent niche law firm that trades alongside Fogwill & Jones Wealth Management. The businesses are entirely separate and regulated by different bodies.  The only connection is that they are both owned by Colin Fogwill.  The benefit to our clients is that when financial advice is needed alongside legal advice, these services are available at one location.