Signature of Certificates on Powers of Attorney - Trainee Solicitors

Sections 15, 16 and 16A of the Adults with Incapacity (Scotland) Act 2000 provide that a continuing power of attorney or a welfare power of attorney must incorporate a certificate by a practising solicitor or a doctor that the solicitor or doctor has interviewed the granter immediately before he or she signed the documents; that the solicitor or doctor is satisfied from their own knowledge or having consulted other named persons that the granter understands the nature and extent of the power of attorney; and that the solicitor or doctor has no reason to believe that the grantor is acting under undue influence or that any other factor vitiates the granting of the document.

These are onerous responsibilities requiring a degree of experience of practice and such responsibility should not be placed on a trainee solicitor with a restricted practising certificate.