Swain & Co. can act decisively to protect people who by reason of age, illness or disability are unable to make certain decisions on their own behalf. Prompt and effective action can protect such people from abuse at the hands of unscrupulous family members, neighbours or even care home providers and can assist in staving off ill conceived ‘best interests’ decisions of Local Authorities.
The Mental Capacity Act 2005 has created a legal test for establishing whether a person is unable to make a particular decision for himself. It is referred to as having the ‘mental capacity’ to make a particular decision.
We can assist in relation to the following:
- Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DOLS)
- Negotiating Best Interests decisions and attending Best Interests Meetings,
- Court of Protection applications and challenges
- Enduring / Lasting Powers of Attorney and Deputyship Orders
We can advise family members in relation to how to handle what are often difficult situations. We can advise how to obtain the necessary medical evidence in order to determine whether someone is able to make a particular decision and if there is any doubt or dispute, take the appropriate action to resolve the situation. We often successfully assist clients to negotiate with Local Authorities to try to ensure they act in an individual’s best interests, hoping to avoid the need to refer matters to the Court of Protection.
In appropriate cases challenges can be brought in the Court of Protection in order to determine what is in the individual’s best interests.
Where appropriate we can advise in relation to the bringing of action in the Court of Protection. We can advise in relation to Deprivation of Liberty (DOLS) challenges to the High Court. If brought by an individual deprived of their liberty, on their behalf, or by their Relevant Person’s Representative, a challenge can be brought free-of-charge.
“Applications concerning someone’s welfare can be funded by legal aid. Lasting Powers of Attorney and Deputyship Applications can be dealt with on a fixed fee basis. In certain situations we can prepare, execute and register a lasting Power of Attorney free-of-charge.”
A client’s view
“Thank you for your immense support, strength and compassion over the last few months. I was so very pleased to have someone who was young, astute and empathic on my side.”
For further information about how the Mental Capacity Act 2005 could impact on your life, please see the extremely helpful Code of Practice by visiting: http://www.justice.gov.uk/downloads/guidance/protecting-the-vulnerable/mca/mca-code-practice-0509.pdf
This is a fast evolving area of law with decisions being made by the Court of Protection and higher courts extremely frequently. For the best and most up to date information please see http://mentalhealthlaw.co.uk/39_Essex_Street_COP_Newsletter.
We have worked with one of the Authors, who is very much a leading barrister in her field of work.
We also have very close working relationships with barristers at Hardwicke Chambers who very frequently represent amongst the most vulnerable in society.