A Deputyship application is far more likely to succeed if it has been properly submitted by a qualified professional. We are able to provide advice and assistance in preparing applications to the Court, obtaining the medical evidence required by the Court, implementing the Order once made and assisting the appointed Deputy following their appointment. Email us here to ensure that your deputyship application is in safe hands.
What is a Deputy?
A Deputy is a person appointed by the Court of Protection to manage the affairs of another person, who lacks the mental capacity to manage their affairs themselves.
If a person becomes mentally incapable of making decisions for themselves and they have not granted an Enduring Power of Attorney or Lasting Power of Attorney, the Court of Protection may appoint a Deputy to manage their affairs.
A Deputy can only act under a Court Order made by the Court of Protection. The Court Order sets out the specific powers of the Deputy in relation to the person who lacks capacity.
Why set up a Deputyship?
No one has any legal authority to deal with another’s affairs in the event of that person losing capacity unless they are an attorney under an Enduring or Lasting Power of Attorney or a Court appointed Deputy.
If a person has assets that need to be administered or decisions are required to be taken about their personal welfare and they lack mental capacity, then a Deputyship may be required.
Who can be a Deputy?
In most cases, a spouse, partner or close family member would apply to become Deputy.
A Deputy must be over the age of 18. When making the application to be appointed Deputy, any criminal convictions or bankruptcy arrangements must be declared to the Court and this may lead to the Court refusing the application.
Where there is no-one willing or suitable to act as Deputy for the person who lacks mental capacity, then a professional Deputy can be appointed.
What are the Duties of a Deputy?
The Mental Capacity Act 2005 sets out Deputy’s duties.
The Deputy must ensure that they act in the best interests of the person who lacks capacity.
The Deputy can only make decisions authorised by the Deputyship Order and must have regard to all relevant guidance in the Code of Practice. The Code of Practice provides guidance and information on the Mental Capacity Act and how it works in practice.
Are Deputies supervised?
The Office of the Public Guardian assesses each Deputy and applies to each Deputy a level of supervision. There are four levels of supervision, ranging from close supervision to a light touch supervision.
How to apply?
To apply to become a Deputy, an application must be submitted to the Court of Protection. The Court of Protection then assesses the suitability of each Deputy from the information provided on the application forms.
The person who lacks capacity must be assessed by their GP (or other medical practitioner) in order to assess whether they lack capacity and a form completed and submitted alongside the application to the Court of Protection.
An application fee of £400 is payable to the Court of Protection at the time the application is submitted.
Upon the Deputy’s appointment, a Deputy set-up fee is payable.
Other fees include a supervision fee which is payable per annum.
How can we help?
The head of our Wills, Trusts and Tax team, Clive Pointon, is a member of the Court of Protection Panel of Professional Deputies and acts as Deputy on many ongoing matters.
Our team is able to deal with all aspects of Lasting Powers of Attorney to allow you to appoint an individual to look after your assets and welfare if you ever become incapable of doing so. We are experienced in preparing applications to the Court on behalf of prospective Deputies.
For further information, please contact our Wills, Trusts and Tax team on 01244 405555 or email them here.
Click here to download information on the services of this team