It can be heartbreaking when a person you care about can no longer make decisions for themselves. This is when they are most vulnerable, and understandably, you’ll want to ensure that they are protected and that someone that has their best interests at heart can make decisions for them.
If they have previously prepared and registered their Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA) then it would be at this point that their attorney would step in to make those important decisions for them. However, if there are no existing LPAs, or an EPA – Enduring Power of Attorney (replaced by LPAs in 2007), this is when a deputy must be appointed by the Court of Protection.
A deputy must be appointed by the Court of Protection, and can only be sought when a person lacks the capacity to make their own decisions and there is no attorney in place.
There are two types of deputies:
For Property and Financial Affairs
The deputy will be legally able to pay bills, collect pensions, and sell assets on behalf of the person that lacks capacity.
For Health and Welfare
This type of deputyship is extremely rare, but if granted, the deputy will legally be able to make decisions about the person’s health and personal welfare, which could include medical treatment options.
How we can help
We can help by applying to the Court of Protection and making the deputyship application on your behalf. The process can be challenging but our expert team has years of experience and can give you the peace of mind knowing that the deputyship order will be granted as soon as possible, giving your loved one the best protection.
If you are unsure whether your loved one lacks mental capacity, we will arrange for a formal assessment to take place by trusted social work practices and capacity experts.
We can also make further applications to the Court of Protection as required, for example, if there is a need for a property to be sold to pay for care fees, making an urgent application, or to change, discharge or appoint an additional deputy.
We can also provide continuing assistance to support your deputyship by completing annual deputyship reports.
In some cases, there may not be a suitable person to take on the role of deputy when a person loses the capacity to make certain decisions for themselves. This could happen simply when a suitable family member or friend doesn’t exist or does not want to act, or because the person’s finances are too complex for someone to manage. In this instance, a professional deputy could be appointed.
Whatever your circumstances our Court of Protection lawyers can help. We have decades of experience supporting families in Oxfordshire and beyond, putting our clients interests first, so you can rest assured you will be in safe hands.