When a person loses mental capacity, they may need help with managing their finances. If they have not set up a Lasting Power of Attorney, someone will have to apply to the Court of Protection to be appointed as their Deputy.
Many people act as Deputy for a close family member. This is an important role with a number of duties and responsibilities, some of which are quite onerous.
We act as Professional Deputy for many clients who live independently but are also very vulnerable. The Deputy must protect the person’s assets from exploitation and must be alert to safeguarding concerns.
In order to ensure that the Deputy does not benefit personally from Deputyship funds, any money paid from the incapacitated person to the Deputy must be approved by the Court. This might include a contribution towards household bills or other living expenses, or a payment for the care that the Deputy provides.
If a Professional Deputy is appointed, they can make these decisions without applying to Court as the Deputy is independent and has no conflict of interest when making decisions.
When deciding whether expenditure should be incurred, the most important guiding principle for any Deputy is that all decisions must be in the incapacitated person’s best interests.
Often there is no family member who is able to take on the role of Deputy and the only option is to appoint a Professional Deputy. At Andrew Isaacs Law, we have been appointed as Professional Deputy for many clients over the years. We have a specialist team who deal with all aspects of property and affairs Deputyships. We can also provide advice and assistance to family members who are appointed as Deputy.
Contact our dedicated Court of Protection team with any queries you may have on 01302 349 480.
Philippa Barton – Senior Solicitor – Court of Protection Team
Article dated: 19.01.2023