The Court of Protection is a specialist Court which protects and supports vulnerable people who are unable to make decisions for themselves about their finances, property and personal welfare due to lack of mental capacity. A person who lacks mental capacity is often referred to as a Protected Party or P.
If found to lack capacity, the Court of Protection appoints Deputies to act on behalf of P. There are two types of deputy, a property and finance deputy and a health and welfare deputy. Further information on the role of Deputies and the Court of Protection can be found here.
A formal application must be made to the Court of Protection for the appointment of a Deputy. A Deputy can be anyone over the age of 18, who is not bankrupt, and are usually a close relative or friend of P who is able, and willing, to make decisions on behalf of P. However in cases where there has been a large compensation award as a result of a brain injury, it may be more appropriate to appoint a professional deputy who has the expertise in dealing with such cases as there could be complex financial matters to be managed.
It is usual for there to just one Deputy, but it is possible for there to be two people appointed, either jointly (where decisions must be taken together), or jointly and severally (where decisions can be taken together or separately).
The process of appointing a Deputy can take several months to process and fees are payable to the Court to consider the application and to process the Order. The Order will set out what the Deputy can and cannot do.
Brain Injury Group members can assist with the application to the Court of Protection for the appointment of a Deputy, as well as acting as Professional Deputies to people with acquired brain injuries.
Lasting Powers of Attorney
A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a document which an individual can put in place whilst they still have mental capacity, which sets out who they would like to take control of their affairs in the event that they lose mental capacity in the future, as a result of an accident or illness. There are two types of LPA, a health and welfare LPA which will allow you nominated person to make decisions on your behalf about such things as your medical treatment, where you should live and end-of-life choices, The second type is a property and financial affairs LPA which will allow your nominated person to make decisions about your finances, property and other assets owned by you.
An LPA can be set up by anyone over the age of 18 who has the mental capacity to do so. Whilst an LPA can be set up by the individual without the need to instruct solicitors, its important to ensure that mistakes are not made which could cause your application to be rejected. Our member law firms can assist with the preparation of Lasting Powers of Attorney.
How we can help
Our specialist member law firms can assist in the following areas:
- applications for those who wish to apply to be a deputy
- ad hoc advice for deputies to assist with annual returns or complying with other Court obligations
- acting in contested applications to the Court of Protection
- objecting to other applications that are being made
- ongoing Court of Protection matters
- best interests and deprivation of liberty
- Lasting Powers of Attorney
- Statutory Wills
- Completion of tax returns for deputy clients
- Estate planning and trusts
- Expert witness statements (costs) as part of a personal injury or clinical negligence claim.
Find a Court of Protection Specialist
You can find a specialist Court of Protection member law firm in our Court of Protection directory.
Find a Court of Protection specialist with the area of expertise you are interested in: