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Safeguarding your loved ones

How can we help you with Court of Protection?

The Court of Protection offers a legal safety net for those who no longer have the mental capacity to manage on their own. This may be due to an illness such as dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, or it may be a result of a developmental condition or brain injury.

If someone close to you has become unable to make important decisions for themselves, it may be time to step in. We can support you in making an application to the Court of Protection.

Application for Deputy

If someone close to you is struggling to make decisions for themselves due to advancing age, illness or an accident, you may need to consider stepping in on their behalf. The Court of Protection may be able to grant you the legal right to do this.

Who has the right to be appointed as deputy will depend on the individual circumstances of each case. Usually a close family member will fulfil this role, but friends or even professionals such as solicitors can also act in this capacity. It may be appropriate for a solicitor to act as a deputy in cases where the individual has no immediate family, or where there is a disagreement about who should take on the role.

You will need to consider whether you want to:

● Apply to act as a deputy.
● Ask Roche Legal to act as a deputy.
● Apply for permission to make a specific decision.
● Submit a rival application to become a deputy.

If you are concerned about an individual close to you and whether they are still able to manage their affairs independently, please get in touch. We will be able to answer your questions about becoming a deputy, explain the workings of the Court of Protection and support you in making an application.

Statutory Wills

A Will is a very important legal document. Unfortunately, not everyone makes one in time. In order to make a Will, an individual needs to be of sound mind. If someone is no longer fully aware of the importance of the document, then they may not be able to write one. In cases such as these, it’s possible to apply to the Court of Protection to request that a Statutory Will is made on that person’s behalf.

As part of the application process, you’ll need to provide a proposed version of the Statutory Will. This should be put together with the person’s best interests in mind.

You’ll need to consider:

● What you think the person would’ve chosen to do if they were able to make a Will themselves.
● What their beliefs and personal values are, and how these might have affected their wishes.
● The kind of decisions the person has made for themselves in the past.

It is also possible to apply to the Court of Protection to change someone’s Will when they are no longer able to change it themselves. This is useful in cases where circumstances have changed since the original Will was made and you believe they would want to reflect this in their Will.

If you think you may have a case for changing the Will of someone close to you, we will be able to advise you on how best to proceed.

One Off Decisions

There are often difficult decisions to be made when caring for a loved one who’s no longer able to make choices for themselves. Often, an attorney or deputy will be appointed on their behalf to manage this.

However, sometimes a decision may be required when a deputy or attorney has not been appointed. There can also be certain types of decision that attorneys or deputies do not have the authority to make, or decisions that attorneys or deputies cannot agree on.

In cases like these, it may be necessary to apply to the Court of Protection to ask them to make a one-off decision.

The kinds of decisions the Court of Protection can help with include:

• Whether an attorney or deputy can make gifts or gratuitous payments on behalf of the person who has lost capacity.
• Whether jointly-owned property can be sold.
• What should happen to property held solely in the name of the person who has lost capacity.
• Whether or not someone is able to visit a person who no longer has capacity.
• Where a person who has lost capacity should live, or how they should be cared for.
• Whether to consent to or refuse medical treatment.

Where can you get support in these situations?

Our experienced solicitors can help you manage an application for a property or finance related one-off decision.

We will be able to advise you on what will be involved, any evidence that might be required and how long it’s likely to take to get a decision. We will also be able to offer advice on whether there is anything you can do in the meantime.

Appealing a decision

We can also help if you need to appeal a property or finance related decision made by the Court of Protection. These kinds of appeals are not always straight-forward, and in certain situations you may have to apply for permission to appeal first. Our team will talk you through the process, explain what your options are and remain on your side every step of the way.

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Get the legal advice you need

Dealing with legal issues can be confusing and stressful. If you’re not sure exactly how we can help you, or if you want to get specialist advice right away, please don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and get in touch.

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