The Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department is examining regulatory options to determine the costs and benefits of a proposed registration of Enduring Power of Attorney (EPOA) instruments.

To date there is no nationally consistent data source that banks and health service providers can use to determine if an EPOA is current and valid.

The Attorney General’s Department want to know whether:

  • there is evidence/experience of third parties having difficulty determining whether an EPOA should be relied upon;
  • invalid transactions have occurred due to incorrect assessment of the validity of an EPOA to support a transaction and any legal and other costs incurred by individuals/third parties in these situations;
  • the difficulties associated with identifying the currency of an EPOA are thought to be significant enough to warrant a regulatory response.

The consultation paper explores whether the best approach to this problem is by: maintaining the status quo, introducing a mandatory registration requirement for EPOAs or voluntary EPOA registration.

For each of these approaches, the consultation wants to know whether:

  • there is support for any of the proposed approaches (status quo, mandatory registration, voluntary registration) and why;
  • there is opposition to any of these approaches and why;
  • alternative views are held regarding the potential costs and benefits associated with these options; and
  • any data or views are available on costs incurred by individuals/third parties from not addressing difficulties with determining whether to rely on an EPOA.

Proposals of alternative approaches to the issue are also welcomed (Question 19).

The consultation paper is available here. Please provide any feedback to Marlene Eggert, Senior Policy Advisor via email marlenee@lasa.asn.au by Friday 28 February 2020.

Submissions, and any enquiries, should be emailed to EPOAConsultationRIS@ag.gov.au by Monday 9 March 2020. Please support your views with evidence or data where possible. The submission template is available here.