How do you remove a deputy?
A deputy is a person appointed by the Court of Protection to make decisions on behalf of someone, known as the protected party, who lacks the mental capacity to make those decisions for themselves.
Deputies can deal with a person’s property and financial affairs, health and welfare or both. Their powers and duties are set out in the Mental Capacity Act 2005, related guidance and any orders made by the Court of Protection.
As to how to remove a deputy where there is a dispute, this requires an application to the Court of Protection to revoke their appointment.
The Court of Protection must be satisfied that the deputy has behaved, is behaving or proposes to behave in a way that breaches their authority or is otherwise not in the best interests of the protected party.
Our solicitors have significant experience in removing deputies.
Please see our video titled ‘Disputed deputyship and attorney applications’ above for further information.
What are the grounds to remove an attorney or deputy?
Examples of behaviour which often warrants an application to revoke a power of attorney or remove a deputy are:
- a failure to keep proper accounts or financial records;
- where joint attorneys are unable to work together;
- where the attorney or deputy has authorised large gifts to be made out of the person’s funds (see ‘How can I challenge gifts made by an attorney or deputy? below’); or
- where they are clearly not acting in the person’s best interests.
We have significant experience in dealing with Court of Protection disputes which may arise over the appointment or removal of a deputy or attorney.
Whether you are the proposed deputy or attorney facing a challenge or you have concerns about the person who is intending to become, or is already, a deputy or attorney, our team of solicitors are on hand to offer you legal advice and guidance.
How can I challenge gifts made by an attorney or deputy?
Assuming the attorney or deputy is unwilling or unable to revoke the gifts then an application to the Court of Protection to set aside the gifts may be needed.
Alternatively, if you are an attorney or deputy who has made gifts which are now being challenged it is possible to apply to the Court of Protection for retrospective approval.
Statutory will Disputes
The Mental Capacity Act 2005 sets out the key guidance on statutory wills and any statutory will must be made in the person’s best interests. The Court of Protection will therefore want to ensure that, in making an application for a statutory will, the following has been considered:
the person’s past and present wishes and feelings (and, in particular, any relevant written statement made by them when they had capacity)
the beliefs and values that would be likely to influence their decision if they had capacity
the other factors that they would be likely to consider if they were able to do so
If you are likely to be affected by a statutory will application then you are entitled to respond and have your say. We are able to advise you whether you wish to prepare a statutory will on someone’s behalf, want to dispute a statutory will application or need to defend a challenge to a statutory will.