Lay and Professional Deputies
It is also possible for the Court of Protection to appoint a professional deputy. This is particularly important and more likely if for example an attorney under a power of attorney has abused their role and has abused the person who gave them the power (the donor) financially and/or in relation to their care. A professional deputy has the skills and expertise to deal with the challenges of the role. As a panel deputy, Jane and the team frequently act where donors of Enduring or Lasting Powers of Attorney have been abused financially, or regarding their care. The team assists the Public Guardian in its investigation into wrongdoing regarding the vulnerable party’s affairs.
Where Jane acts as deputy, she and the team will always try to work with the person’s family at all times, but it is important to note their obligations are first and foremost to the vulnerable person.
The team advises on all aspects of Court of Protection work and the role and duties of deputies. Jane handles deprivation of liberty matters including advising lay deputies around these issues, and what amounts to a deprivation and in what circumstances.
Jane and the team also adhere to the regulatory guidance released by the Public Guardian, which requires proposed expenditure and prospective annual costs to be submitted to the Office of the Public Guardian a year in advance, and is alive to the need to review capacity in accordance with the Code of Practice which accompanies the Mental Capacity Act 2005. In particular, they consider on an ongoing basis whether deputyship is still required, or whether the person may or should be discharged from the auspices of the Court of Protection.