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Deputyship Orders - a guide

I always speak to my clients about Lasting Powers of Attorney or Enduring Powers of Attorney.  These are documents that allow you to appoint a person to deal with your affairs, both financial and health, in the event that you lose your mental capacity. 

But what happens if you lose your mental capacity without having these important documents in place?  That is when a Deputyship Order is required.

A Deputyship Order is a way to allow a family member or friend to make decisions about your money or care in the event that you have lost mental capacity without putting a Lasting or Enduring Power of Attorney in place.  If you have a stroke, have dementia or have a fall that renders you unconscious, then you will need someone to make decisions for you to include paying your bills or managing your investments (if you have a large amount of money).

A deputy is usually a family member or close friend.  Sometimes, a solicitor can act as a deputy. A person can have more than one deputy, and this can be a good idea as being a deputy can be time consuming and stressful.  As a deputy, you must always act in the best interests of the person who has lost capacity.  You must submit an annual deputyship report to the Court of Protection and you will need to keep a record of financial accounts and all decisions made. 

There is a deputyship order for health and welfare but these are rare.  If you are granted this responsibility, then you will be required to make decisions regarding medical treatment and care.

In order to become a deputy, you will need to submit an application to the Court of Protection.  You will need to give detailed information about the person you are applying on behalf of. There is an application fee that must be paid (currently £371) which will ultimately be paid by the person who requires the order.

Once the order has been made, the court will send you guidance on how to arrange a security bond.  This is a type of insurance designed to financially protect the person whose affairs and property the deputy is managing.

The Office of the Public Guardian is responsible for checking that a deputy is carrying out their duties.  All new deputies are placed under supervision for their first year and this continues throughout unless the person has assets below a certain amount, and there are no concerns about the deputy, in which case they will be placed under minimal supervision.

If you require further information regarding Deputy Orders, please contact Amanda Piper on 01905 723561 or Florence Goodwin who can help with Lasting Powers of Attorney on the same number.

Added: 21 Mar 2024 14:09

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