The appointment of a deputy requires an application to the Court of Protection.
Prior to making an appointment, the Court must be satisfied that the person concerned lacks capacity to make their own decisions and also that the proposed deputy is suitable to act on the person’s behalf. Resolving questions of capacity is often complex and it is important to avoid making assumptions in respect of capacity based solely on a person’s diagnosis.
Lay deputies are usually family members or close friends of the person who they are acting on behalf of.
If you are appointed as a deputy, you will have key responsibilities in relation to the finance or health and wellbeing of the person you are acting for.
You will be required to:
- Ensure that any decisions made are in the best interest of the person
- Follow the guidance of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 Code of Practice
- Ensure a high standard of care is applied to decision making – considering whether other relatives or professionals should be involved in providing advice / guidance
- Report and provide accounts to the Office of the Public Guardian
There are important legal safeguards to protect and support autonomy in decision making.
Although the Court can appoint a welfare deputy, this type of appointment is much less common than a financial deputy because the Court has a duty to make decisions which are the least restrictive upon the individual’s rights and freedoms.
For further information or support regarding appointing a Deputy, please contact Price Slater Gawne on 0161 6155554.