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What is Deputyship?

When a person is unable to manage their own affairs due to mental incapacity and they have not made any legal provisions for somebody else to look after their affairs in the form of an Enduring Power of Attorney or a Lasting Power of Attorney, another person called a Deputy can be appointed to deal with their affairs on their behalf.

When a person is incapable of managing their own affairs and they have assets which need to be safeguarded for their own benefit, such as savings or a property, an application needs to be made to the Court of Protection to appoint somebody to act as Deputy. Usually, the proposed Deputy is a relative of the person or someone who has knowledge of their affairs. A professional can also act as Deputy and here at Geoffrey Leaver we have specialist solicitors who act as Deputies for clients.

An application is made to the Court of Protection which comprises a number of forms detailing the client’s assets, personal circumstances and an assessment of capacity which is completed by the client’s GP or another doctor familiar with the client.

The current cost of a Deputyship application is £400 (versus the costs of a Lasting Power of Attorney registration which is £110). The application process can be very involved and there is a prescribed procedure which must be followed which includes the serving of documents on various people. We can ensure that this is done correctly and on time saving the necessity to pay the application fee twice if something is wrong!

The Court issues an Order which confirms the appointment of a Deputy which gives the Deputy wide powers to manage the client’s affairs. These decisions may include the opening or closing of a bank account, managing stocks and shares and even selling property. It may be necessary to obtain a further Order from the Court to make wide ranging decisions such as dealing with very large sums of money and again Geoffrey Leaver can help you ensure that the right application is made at the right time.

It is important to work with trusted partners to guide you through this difficult time and ensure the best possible actions are taken for all involved. Applying for Deputyship can be costly, confusing and upsetting and at Geoffrey Leaver, our experienced and expert Solicitors can offer guidance and advice throughout the application process and when appointed and managing the person’s affairs.

For more information or to discuss how we can help with issues involving the Court of Protection please email our Private Client specialist Dagmara Kulczykowska or call us on 01908 689317.