Court of Protection applications
- AuthorMichelle Cruddas
Lasting Powers of Attorney allow you to choose individuals to looking after your affairs if, at some point in the future, you are unable to do so. One of the key misunderstandings is that if you leave it too late and your mental capacity is already diminishing, you probably will not be able to put a Lasting Power of Attorney in place. In this situation, you will become subject to the Court of Protection and someone will need to apply to the Court to be appointed as Deputy. Anyone can apply but this will often be a family member or friend.
Unfortunately, such are the pressures on the Court of Protection that it can take many weeks before the Court can confirm who will be the Deputy (or Deputies) and give them the relevant authority. During this period, money issues may mount up and whilst family members are not legally obliged to settle any bills, they may voluntarily decide to do so. However, they will need to keep proper records such as receipts or direct debit details if they are to be reimbursed after the Court of Protection appoints a Deputy.
Planning ahead and putting a Lasting Power of Attorney in place in good time means you can choose who will look after your affairs, if that becomes necessary, and the scope of their authority. It could also potentially save worry and financial hassle for those looking after your affairs if they can do so as soon as they need to, using a Lasting Power of Attorney that is already place, rather than waiting for the Court of Protection to appoint a Deputy.