In the recent case of Re H, Senior Judge Lush noted that many elderly carers of young disabled persons experience great anxiety about what will become of the younger person when they, their parents and carers, have gone.
If a person does not have mental capacity to make decisions regarding their affairs and does not have a Power of Attorney in place, the Court of Protection can appoint a Deputy to act for that individual.
Problems may arise when the Deputy appointed by the Court loses capacity themselves or is not able to look after the individual’s affairs any more. Ordinarily, this would mean that a new Court of Protection Deputyship application is needed to appoint a replacement Deputy, this would result in further Court fees and possibly legal fees as well.
In this case, the Court of Protection appointed successive Deputies to act for a young woman who suffers from autism. Her parents are currently appointed to act as her Deputies and they applied to the Court for their daughter’s two aunts and her carer to be appointed as successive Deputies in the event that the parents were not able to act as Deputies for their daughter in the future.
This means that at that point, instead of having to make a new Court of Protection Deputyship application for a replacement Deputy to be appointed in the parents’ place, the successive Deputies have already been appointed for when they are needed.
The Court considered the advantages and disadvantages of appointing successive Deputies and ultimately decided that the factor of magnetic importance was that the appointment of successive Deputies was in the young woman’s best interests and it would also give her two parents peace of mind.
If you are considering making a Court of Protection Deputyship application on behalf of a younger person, then following the judgment in this case, it is certainly worth considering whether to also apply for a successive Deputy to be appointed as well.
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