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The Court of Protection – A Guide.

The Court of Protection is a specialist Court concerned with the management of the affairs of individuals who are vulnerable and who do not have capacity to look after their own affairs. Someone might lack capacity because of a brain injury or illness, or because of the onset of dementia (often, but not always, age related) or because of a severe learning disability.

The Court has a variety of roles and functions including:

  • To appoint deputies. The deputy will look after and manage the property and financial affairs of the vulnerable person.  The deputy will often be a relative or close friend but can be a professional person such as a solicitor.
  • To supervise deputies. A deputy can only act in regard to property and financial affairs to the extent allowed by the Court Order appointing them.  The deputy can apply to the Court for additional authority if it becomes necessary to do so.  The deputy must submit to an annual audit.
  • To provide the deputy with guidance if there is uncertainty over a particular course of action or to rule on any dispute which might arise. This might be a family dispute or issues with the Local Authority. The Court will consider submissions which are made and will hear expert evidence.  The governing principle is that, whatever a deputy does, it must be in the best interest of the vulnerable person and must be least restrictive on the vulnerable person.

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