The Court of Protection was established by the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and looks after the rights of people who lack the mental capacity to make decisions regarding their property, affairs or personal welfare.
The Court of Protection exists to protect vulnerable people and has the power to:
- decide if they have the capacity to make a decision for themselves
- make decisions on financial or welfare matters for anyone who is unable (eg lacks capacity to make the decisions for themselves)
- appoint deputies to take decisions on their behalf, and ensure that the Deputy appointed acts correctly – if they do not the Court of Protection has the right to remove them
- decide on the validity of a Lasting Power of Attorney or Enduring Power of Attorney and also to hear cases regarding objections to these legal documents.
What is a Deputy?
A Deputy is a person appointed by the Court of Protection to manage the personal welfare or the property and affairs of another person, who lacks the mental capacity to manage them themselves. A Deputy can only act under a court order from the Court of Protection. This order sets out the Deputy’s powers and entitles the Deputy to act on behalf of the person lacking capacity.
A Deputy will not be required if the person lacking capacity has previously made a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA). In this case, provided the LPA has been properly registered, the attorney can continue to make decisions on behalf of the person lacking capacity.