Financial Planning


A will is a legal document that allows you to choose what happens to your belongings and property after you die. Although people can create their own will using a will kit, when a person has dementia, family members may question whether the person had legal capacity, or is mentally capable to make a will. As such, it may be prudent for the person with dementia to seek assistance from a lawyer or the Public Trustee. 1

Enduring power of attorney (Financial)

This is a legal procedure that allows someone appointed by the person with dementia to control their property and financial affairs when they no longer have the capacity to make those decisions themselves. It is important to note that an Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA) is different to a Power of Attorney which becomes invalid once a person loses their decision making capacity. It may be wise to seek the advice of a lawyer, particularly if the person's financial affairs are complicated, or if there is a question of legal capacity. 2

There are different sources of information in each Australian State and Territory, as listed in the table below. Users from outside Australia should contact their local legal aid or public advocacy department as a useful starting point.

StateDepartmentPhone NumberForms
ACT Public Advocate of the ACT 02 6207 0707 Click
New South Wales Office of the Public Guardian 1800 451 510 Click
Northern Territory Land Titles Office 08 8951 5339 08 8999 6520 Click
Queensland Department of Justice and Attorney General 1300 780 666 Click
South Australia Office of the Public Advocate 1800 066 969 Must be purchased
Tasmania Guardianship and Administration Board 03 6233 3085 Click
Victoria Office of the Public Advocate 1300 309 337 Click
Western Australia Department of the Attorney General 131 217 Click

References and recommended reading

  1. Alzheimer's Australia (2005). Legal Planning and Dementia, Position Paper 5. Available from
  2. Office of the Public Advocate. (2006). Powers of Attorney. Available from 
  3. Alzheimers Australia. (2005). Legal Planning and Dementia. Available from
  4. Alzheimer's Australia (2001). Driving and Dementia: A Background Paper. Available from
  5. O'Neill, D., Neubauer, K., Boyle, M., Gerrard, J., & Surmon, D. (1992). Dementia and driving. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 85, 199-202.