Elizabeth Young - Head of Private Client team
Lasting Powers of Attorney

Court of Protection and Mental Capacity

As part of Roythornes commitment to ensuring our clients are covered for all eventualities we have developed a range of services empowering individuals to plan for the management of their financial and personal affairs in the event that they are prevented from doing so as a result of injury or illness.

Powers of Attorney

Every Roythornes client is encouraged to consider the advantages of a Power of Attorney. This may range from the pure simplicity of general Power of Attorney in which authority can be transferred to deal with an immediate need, to the more complex and considered Lasting Powers of Attorney. Even in the most desperate of situations our caring and sensitive team of Court of Protection experts will be able to guide any family through the options available to them.

Our underlying advice is of course to plan for the worst, with the best possible advice.

Court of Protection

This important arm of the High Court is responsible for overseeing the financial and welfare decisions and management undertaken on behalf of some of the most vulnerable individuals our society sees. We understand how the Court of Protection rules, the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and its associated code of practice affect our work in this arena and most particularly we can explain what the principles of best practice are that govern any decision making undertaken on behalf of those subject to the regime.

Where an individual is assessed as having lost the capacity to manage generally, or specifically in relation to particular tasks our team can guide potential deputies through the myriad of Court of Protection forms that need to be completed.

Enduring Powers of Attorney (EPA)

Provided executed before 1st October 2007 Enduring Powers of Attorney continue to be valid and useful. Where the donor of an Enduring Power of Attorney has become or is becoming incapable of managing their affairs there is an obligation on the attorney to register the power with the Office of the Public Guardian, and again, we have the team to support you in completing this task too.

Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA)

These useful documents in their initial form were introduced from 1 October 2007. They differ from their predecessor EPA in a number of ways, including;

  • LPAs now take two forms;
    • LPA for property and financial affairs
    • LPA for health and Welfare
  • To be valid and effective LPAs must be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) a process which can take several months to complete.
  • An additional layer of security is provided in that a Certificate Provider must validate the completion of the LPA in addition to it being signed and witnessed as you might expect of any legal document

We have, quite literally, helped thousands of clients to put in place Lasting Powers of Attorney and in most cases can offer a fixed quotation covering the cost of preparation and registration.

Appearing in the Court of Protection

The Court of Protection and its judges are well known for their approachability and sensitivity, and the process on the whole is well suited to individuals with cause to address the Court of Protection. Attending Court under any circumstances is nevertheless a daunting process, and if you find yourself requested to attend Court we can happily provide support in and out of Court, reassure you and ease your burden.

Panel Deputy

Elizabeth Young, Head of our Private Client team, has been a Court of Protection appointed panel deputy since 2001 and is now one of just 60 panel deputies across the UK entrusted with Court of Protection referrals. Elizabeth’s role is to manage the financial affairs of individuals who no longer have capacity to manage their affairs through brain injury, mental illness, or age related dementia. Elizabeth currently manages a portfolio of around 30 deputyships involving clients from all walks of life, of all ages, and with a range of individual needs and circumstances.

Abuse and mismanagement by attorneys and deputies

Sadly, cases of financial abuse and the mismanagement of finances through ignorance or deliberate steps are still common occurrences. If you are concerned that an attorney is not acting in the best interests of those they care for, or a deputy is overstepping the limits of their authority, then we can also advise on what steps can be taken to reclaim the situation.

This can be especially difficult and traumatic where family members are concerned and we have the ability and sensitivity to ensure that disputes of this nature are resolved collaboratively and without escalation of already emotionally charged situations. Where there has been serious wrong doing we work with all the relevant agencies to recover misappropriated funds, overcharges, and in some cases ensure that the culprits are brought to justice.

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