Every adult has the right to manage his or her own financial affairs and to make their own decisions regarding their welfare.
There may be times when you are not able to make such decisions for yourself or that you are not physically able to do so. For example if you are buying or selling property but are not available to sign documentation you may wish to appoint someone else to deal with matters on your behalf, known as your Attorney.
Alternatively, in situations where, due to illness, disability or accident a persons' capacity to make their own decisions is impaired, a Lasting Power of Attorney can be invaluable. Whilst no one likes to contemplate what will happen to them if they lose their mental capacity, there is a process which can be put in place to ensure that they and their interests will be well looked after.
A Lasting Power of Attorney allows a person to nominate one or more attorneys (nominated friends or family) to make decisions should they lose the mental capacity to do so themselves. A Lasting Power of Attorney will need to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian before it may be used by the attorney(s).
In situations where a person has not made a Lasting Power of Attorney and unfortunately no longer has the mental capacity to do so, it is possible for family or friends to apply to the Court of Protection for a Court Order, known as a Deputyship Order, to allow them to act in relation to a person's property and financial or other affairs.
This can be a lengthy and complex process and involves making an application to the Court and serving copies of the Court papers on interested parties such as other relatives. Our team has extensive experience in dealing with Deputyship applications and can offer help and guidance at every stage of the process.