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Court of Protection

Lay Deputy Applications

Our specialist Court of Protection team can advise on all types of applications

We can assist in applying for a family member or friend to be appointed as a deputy on behalf of someone who lacks capacity to make certain decisions. Where this appointment is non-professional in nature, it is often referred to as a lay deputyship.  A deputy can be appointed in respect of a person’s property and affairs, or in respect of their health and welfare. We can advise on all types of application including applications which have become contested.

What does a lay deputy do?

Lay deputies are usually family members or close friends of the person who they are acting on behalf of. If you are appointed as a deputy, you will have key responsibilities in relation to the financial affairs or the health and welfare of the person you are acting for.

As a lay deputy you will be required to:

  • Ensure that any decisions made are in the best interest of the person for whom you are making decisions
  • Follow the guidance of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 Code of Practice 
  • Ensure a high standard of care is applied to decision making: this means considering whether other relatives or professionals should be involved in providing advice/guidance
  • Report and provide accounts to the Office of the Public Guardian

How do I apply to become a lay deputy?

The appointment of a deputy requires an application to the Court of Protection. Whilst this might sound like a daunting task, Price Slater Gawne is equipped and ready to help you in this process.

In making such an appointment, the Court must be satisfied that the person concerned lacks the capacity to make the relevant decisions. It is important to note that capacity is time and decision specific. Secondly, the Court of Protection must decide whether the proposed deputy is suitable. When considering an application to appoint a deputy, the Court must do so by reference to the principles of the Mental Capacity Act and in particular ensuring that any decision made on behalf of someone who lacks capacity is done so in their best interests, and with least restriction.

One of the key considerations in lay deputy applications is resolving questions of mental capacity. Understanding whether a person is able to make decisions or not is often complex.  It is important to avoid making assumptions in respect of capacity and mental state, based solely on a person’s diagnosis. The starting point is always the presumption that a person has capacity.  Evidence is required in order to displace that presumption.

Although the Court can appoint a deputy to make decisions about health and welfare, this type of appointment is much less common than a deputy for property and financial affairs.  The Court of Protection has long been reluctant to appoint a single person as the decision-maker in respect of somebody else’s health and welfare.

For further information or support relating to the Court of Protection or appointing a deputy, please get in touch today by calling 03333 058375 or by email to

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Meet the Team

  • Gareth Williams

    Partner, Court of Protection & Wealth Protection

    Gareth Williams

    t:07497 839796


  • Sam Firth

    Associate, Executive, Court of Protection

    Sam Firth

    t:07508 897860


  • Jade Price

    Solicitor, Court of Protection

    Jade Price

    t:07930 519947


  • Gabrielle Chapman

    Solicitor, Court of Protection

    Gabrielle Chapman

    t:07497 839816


  • Caz Kirkwood

    Administrator, Court of Protection

    Caz Kirkwood

    t:07957 773340


  • Georgia Burgess

    Administrator, Court of Protection

    Georgia Burgess

    t:07980 772002


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