A deputy is someone appointed by the Court of Protection to make decisions for someone who is unable to do so on their own.
A deputy is responsible for making decisions for someone until either the person they’re looking after dies or is able to make decisions on their own again.
The Mental Capacity Act is used to work out if someone can make their own decisions and how they can be helped.
The court won’t appoint someone as deputy if the person is able to make their own decisions. You may be able to make a lasting power of attorney instead. Contact the Office of the Public Guardian if you don’t know what to do.
Who can be a deputy
A deputy is usually a close friend or relative of the person who needs help making decisions.
A deputy can also be a professional, like an accountant or a solicitor. Local authorities are often appointed as a deputy.
Deputies must be over 18.
The Court of Protection can appoint a ‘panel deputy’ to look after someone’s financial affairs if no one else can do this.
A panel deputy is someone with specialist knowledge of mental capacity law.
Types of deputies
There are 2 types of deputies:
- those who look after property and financial affairs
- those who look after a person’s health and welfare
There can be more than 1 person appointed as deputy to each type.