Applications to the Court of Protection.
You may think this only applied to “old” people but everyone over 18 is in the same position. Loss of mental capacity (ability to make decisions) gives control of your life to the Courts. Car accident, stroke, a fall, or the prospect of dementia, now being diagnosed in people in their 30’s.
When the Lasting Powers of Attorney is in place and you have lost the ability to make decisions, then you have decided who can make those decisions for you.
No Lasting Power of Attorneys, then neither your wife, husband or parents and most certainly not your common law partner can make decisions for you.
Bank accounts will be frozen – including joint ones. Property can’t be sold – even to move you into a more suitable home.
Applying for a Court of Protection Deputyship.
So it will be necessary for an application to be made to the Court of Protection for appointment as a Deputy. That can cost several thousand pounds and take between 6 and 12 months. It is perfectly possible that the Social Services Department will get there first and be appointed Deputy and charge their costs to the family member they are looking after. Worse still, there may be a family dispute over who should be appointed as Deputy.
It is possible to make an emergency application to the Court of Protection where matters need to be dealt with more urgently. It isn’t cheap and it could have to be repeated regularly until the Court grants the Deputyship Order. Assuming of course that it does.
You have to apply for deputyship as both a Property and Financial Affairs Deputy and separately as a Health and Welfare Deputy. Four in five applications for appointment as a Health and Welfare Deputy are turned down leaving your family powerless over where you live, who you see or medical matters. So advance planning is really important, so please do contact us well beforehand if at all possible.
Applications to the Court of Protection regarding Deprivation of Liberty.
There are all sorts of safeguards built into the Mental Capacity Act (2005) which are intended to ensure that individual rights are fully respected. Sadly, those who should understand these matters – social workers, care homes, families and sometimes even professionals fail to understand what is called the “Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards.”
So it may be necessary to obtain a Court of Protection Order to ensure that the individuals rights are respected.