The Court of Protection was created by the Mental Capacity Act 2005. The Court has responsibility for making decisions regarding the property, financial affairs and personal welfare of people who cannot make these decisions for themselves because they “lack mental capacity”. The individual who lacks capacity may be referred to as “P” (the patient) or “D” (the donor) or the “adult at risk” because their lack of capacity puts them at risk of abuse, whether physical, emotional or financial.
The Court has a wide remit to make decisions about health and welfare and financial issues. Common examples include:
An application to the Court of Protection can be made to challenge decisions relating to the mental capacity or Best Interests of a relative or to safeguard your loved one against financial abuse, physical or emotional harm. Court applications often deal with difficult decisions about care packages and living arrangements for people who need care at home or residential care.
Many cases which go to the Court of Protection involve differing opinions about what is in the best interests of the individual concerned. In such cases it has not been possible for family members and Health or Social Services to reach an agreement, so the Court of Protection is asked to weigh up all the information and opinions available about what is best for the adult at risk and make a decision.
The Court could also be asked to decide whether an Attorney is unfit to continue to act or if an EPA or LPA should be revoked and a Deputy appointed in their place.