Mental capacity solicitors

Court of Protection solicitors

Contact Our Team










    Our team of specialist Court of Protection solicitors support people who do not have mental capacity to ensure their best interests are met.

    We have extensive experience in mental capacity matters, including deprivation of liberty, deputyship and powers of attorney.

    Our mental capacity teams work in close collaboration with our specialist personal injury and clinical negligence teams.

    We understand that Court of Protection matters often feel extremely daunting, overwhelming, confusing and can be emotionally charged.

    Our expert solicitors pride themselves on getting to know individuals and families, to understand the specific complexities of their stories and in doing everything in their power to reduce the strain.

    We can help in cases where there is a new or developing loss of mental capacity, such as due to a brain injury, in cases where there are temporary or fluctuating mental capacity issues, due to coma for example, as well as where someone has long term mental capacity issues. Many of our clients have children with profound disabilities, who are not expected to ever have the mental capacity to make their own decisions.

    What is the Court of Protection?

    When someone is believed not to have the mental capacity to make decisions for themselves, the Court of Protection becomes involved.

    The court is responsible for ruling whether someone has the mental capacity to make their own decision at the time it needs to be made in accordance with the Mental Capacity Act 2005. The court also appoints people, known as deputies, to make decisions on an ongoing basis on the behalf of an individual who cannot do it for themselves.

    Our solicitors support with all aspects relating to Court of Protection applications, hearings and orders. We act as deputies for many clients.

    Court of Protection matters that our solicitors can support with include:

    • ruling whether someone is able to make their own decisions
    • appointing deputies to make decisions on an ongoing basis on behalf of individuals who cannot do it for themselves
    • awarding consent for someone to make a one-off decision on someone else’s behalf
    • decisions relating to lasting powers of attorney
    • decisions over when someone can be deprived of their liberty/freedom to live without supervision
    • deciding upon applications relating to statutory wills or gifts
    • removing an attorney or deputy
    • disputes over the decisions being made by an attorney or deputy on behalf of someone who does not have capacity to make decisions themselves
    • disputes between individuals involved in the care of someone with mental capacity issues, including family, advocates, local authority and healthcare professionals.

    How do I apply to the Court of Protection?

    The Court of Protection is there for applications to make long term or one-off immediate decisions for someone who lacks capacity to do for themselves.

    The decisions may be in relation to:

    • Money and property
    • Health and welfare

    If a decision relates to medical treatment the court will have regard for any living will or advance decision an individual has made.

    It may be necessary to check that someone does not already have a power of attorney or deputy in place to make decisions for them. We can help with this.

    Court of Protection applications may be necessary when someone lacks mental capacity due to, for example:

    There are numerous forms to complete in order to make an application to the Court of Protection and evidence may be needed too, such as from a doctor.

    The court is equipped to deal with applications and make decisions quickly in emergency situations such as when someone is at risk of harm or there is an immediate medical decision to make.

    Our specialist solicitors can help with all kinds of Court of Protection applications. Do get in touch for advice.

    How much does it cost to make a Court of Protection application?

    The fees involved in a case – and who is responsible for paying them – vary depending on the nature of the application.

    There are cases where help is available for the payment of fees and costs in relation to a Court of Protection case or where fees are not charged.

    Our solicitors can advise you about the costs involved in the type of case you may need to bring and where the money can be drawn from.

    As a guide, in July 2019 new fee rates were set as follows:

    • applications to start Court of Protection proceedings – £365
    • application to appeal a Court of Protection decision – £230
    • hearing fee for a hearing to issue an order, declaration or decision – £485
    • copy of document – £5

    Is it possible to appeal a Court of Protection ruling?

    If you are not happy with a decision made by the Court of Protection you may be able to challenge it via an appeals process.

    It’s a good idea to get legal advice about how likely your appeal is to succeed, the process and what costs might be involved above and beyond the application to appeal fee.

    court-of-protection

    We supported our client Jon*, who is profoundly disabled, to gain approval from the Court of Protection to invest in a specially adapted new home.

    Court of Protection application for adapted home approved

    We supported our client Jon*, who is profoundly disabled, to gain approval from the Court of Protection to invest in a specially adapted new home.

    Jon’s team of 13 carers and his family worked with him to come up with a solution that would be better than the current bungalow where he lived with his mum. Jon’s existing home was not suitable for his long term needs and, whilst he wanted to keep his mum close by, he wanted more independence.

    In view of Jon’s compromised capacity, an assessment was carried out so that we could be satisfied that Jon could be involved with the decision making process.

    Professional advice was sought to ensure the land identified was suitable, an architect appointed to draw up the plans and Jon’s financial situation assessed to ensure the plan was affordable and still allowed him long term security.

    The court of protection approved the investment of £1.35 million into the purchase of land for the development of a bespoke bungalow for Jon and a separate home for his mum.

    Jon remained as involved as possible throughout. He has a kitchen in the colours of his favourite football team and a cinema room to enjoy as well as all the necessary specialist facilities he’ll need in the future.

    His former home was sold and the money reinvested on Jon’s behalf.

    *name changed to protect the identity of our client

    The Court of Protection and fluctuating mental capacity

    The Mental Capacity Act 2005 recognises that over the course of a person’s lifetime their ability to make correct decisions (capacity) will change. Sometimes it can get progressively worse because of conditions like dementia, but in other cases (such as recovering after a stroke or a brain injury), you may lose capacity only to regain it later.

    In these cases it is important that the person is given back the legal right to make their own decisions again, and this is overseen by the Court of Protection.

    As with most areas of law, there are many complexities and specialist solicitors such as ours ensure they are continually updated with relevant new precedents. Our lawyers are experienced in dealing with these kinds of cases. Speak to us about fluctuating capacity today.

    Court of Protection related guides and FAQs

    We have produced a selection of guides to support people with Court of Protection related issues.

    They include:

    What Legal 500 says about Enable Law’s Court of Protection team

    Top legal guides, the Legal 500 and Chambers Directory, feature praise for Enable Law’s mental capacity and Court of Protection specialist solicitors (part of the FootAntsey Group).

    Legal 500 features comment that practice head Stacey Bryant is the ‘gold standard’.

    Other testimonials in within the two guides for the Enable Law Court of Protection team include:

    “Personable, friendly, down to earth, straight talking and caring. I feel able to talk about absolutely anything, good and bad, without feeling judged or not listened to.”

    “Just a fantastic practice that works well with its clients. The lawyers listen to suggestions. Fees are set out at the start of the year and communicated at the annual financial review.”

    “I have always been hugely impressed with everyone I dealt with – they are always available when I need them and are all very approachable.”