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Court of Protection: Some case study examples

Non-Contentious

  1. An elderly gentleman was unable to make decisions for himself regarding his accommodation and his family disagreed with the local authority’s attempts to move him. We successfully applied to the Court of Protection for a Health and Welfare Deputyship Order which gave his relatives the legal voice to speak for him and make decisions about where he should live.
  2. An elderly lady had been independent all her life but following a stroke could no longer manage her financial affairs. She had no close relatives but had been a long standing client of Wards. After discussion with her closest friends, it was felt most appropriate for a Partner in Wards to apply to the court to manage her affairs.
  3. An elderly lady had lived with her sister all her life. When she became unable to manage her affairs, we assisted her sister with an application to the court to be appointed as her Deputy.  The sister also decided she would put in place a Lasting Power of Attorney for herself  so that she was able to choose who would deal with her affairs if she needed assistance in the future.
  4. A son became concerned that his father was unable to manage his affairs. The son and his sister wished to apply jointly to the Court to be appointed as their father’s Deputy. The application was successful and brother and sister were able to ensure that father’s finances were put in order.
  5. An elderly gentleman was no longer able to make his own decisions regarding his financial property and affairs. He had distant relatives and many friends but none felt able to act for him. As a long standing client of Wards a Partner was appointed by the Court of Protection to act as his Deputy. The gentleman’s Will was reviewed as part of the process. It was home made and left monetary legacies to lots of different people with everything else passing to his main beneficiaries. His main beneficiaries were not going to receive anything as the legacies ate up all of his assets. We successfully applied for a new Statutory Will to be approved by the Court. This Statutory Will benefited everyone the gentleman intended to benefit, upon his death, who may otherwise have missed out. It allowed him to be remembered as he would have wished to have been remembered.

Disputes

  1. Our clients’ mother suffered dementia and could not deal with her finances. Shortly before his death, our clients’ father had made some large lifetime gifts to our clients. The gifts were made from the parents’ joint bank account. A professional deputy was appointed to look after their mother’s finances. The deputy noticed the large gifts to our clients during the time when their mother suffered dementia when she could not have known what was happening or consented to the gifts being made. Our clients faced being taken to Court by the deputy to recover the missing money and pay the deputy’s legal fees. We were able to negotiate a settlement with the deputy and our clients completely avoided the Court proceedings and the associated costs.
  2. We acted for the partner of a person who lacked capacity. His daughter was seeking a deputyship order so that she could have control over her father’s finances. The daughter had a very difficult relationship with her father and our client was afraid that the daughter would steal money from her father. We were able to facilitate the agreement between our client and her partner’s daughter, so that neither of them were appointed deputy but a professional deputy was appointed, which meant that neither need be concerned about the actions of the other one.

For more information please contact Alison Lamont (Non-Contentious) or Elizabeth Fry (Disputes)

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