If a person lacks the mental capacity to manage their own finances, an Appointee can be instructed to administer that person’s state benefits. This is the extent of an Appointees control. The responsibilities of an Appointee include:
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonclaiming benefits for the client, including completing and signing any claim forms
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londoncollecting/receiving benefit payments for the client
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonpaying any relevant expenses that the client is due to pay eg. residential care home charges
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonreporting any changes in their own circumstances that the DWP may require

Deputyship works in the same way as appointeeship but offers the additional protection of the client’s assets, savings or property. Deputyship is appropriate when someone has not previously appointed an attorney in a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) and does not have the mental capacity to make an LPA. Deputies are appointed by the CoP, and are required to obtain an Assessment of Capacity Form (COP3) with relation to the client, before they can proceed with their application.
Some of the key responsibilities of a Deputy include:

Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonreceiving the individuals income from all sources, including shares, occupational pensions, state benefits, premium bond winnings etc
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonadministering the day to day finances of their client eg. paying bills
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonkeeping accurate records of the administration of their client’s finances, and been accountable to the CoP in the form of an Annual Report, which is required by law.
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonmaking tax returns
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonlooking after the client’s property
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonclosing down bank accounts and opening one interest bearing account to be used for the maintenance of the client
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londontaking out insurance which covers the client’s income & spending during the life of the deputyship
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonco-operating with any CoP Visitor
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonkeeping to all orders & directions the Court makes
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  Londonnotifying the Court if there is a likelihood of the client getting married, divorced or involved in other legal proceedings

We can also assist Lay Deputies (family member or friend) with applications to the CoP, while also advising them on the legal requirements of the Mental Capacity Act 2005, and the associated Code of Practice.

Professional Deputies is under-written for £3,000,000 of Professional Indemnity Insurance (PI), while Security Bond’s are also taken out for every deputyship client that we take on.

Lasting Powers of Attorney
There are many reasons why you may want to appoint a trusted friend, family member or professional to act on your behalf in a LPA capacity. You may be concerned that your ability to make decisions may diminish in the future due to ill health (both physical and mental), and want to put something in place now. By making such arrangements your affairs will be looked after if and when you lose mental capacity, ensuring that your best interests are taken into account even if you can’t make such decisions for yourself.

There are two different types of LPA’s:

1. Health & Welfare - A Health & Welfare LPA allows you to choose one or more people to make decisions for things such as medical treatment. A Health & Welfare LPA can only be used if you lack the ability to make decisions for yourself.

2. Property & Financial Affairs - A Property & Financial Affairs LPA lets you choose one or more people to make property and financial affairs decisions for you. This could include decisions about paying bills or selling your home. You can appoint someone as an attorney to look after your property and financial affairs at any time. You can also include a condition that means the attorney can only make decisions when you lose the ability to do so yourself.

Having an LPA is a safe way of maintaining control over decisions made for you because:

Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London  it has to be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) before it can be used
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London  you choose someone to provide a ‘certificate’, which means they confirm that you understand the significance and purpose of what you’re agreeing to
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London  you can choose who gets told about your LPA when it is registered (so they have an opportunity to raise concerns)
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London  your signature and the signatures of your chosen attorneys must be witnessed
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London  your attorney(s) must follow the Code of Practice of the MCA 2005 and act in your best interests
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London  the OPG provides helpful support and advice

When it comes to your LPA needs Professional Deputies can assist you to draft and submit your LPA, while also acting as a Professional Attorney for those clients that may not have anyone who could or would be prepared to take on this role. We also act as Replacement Attorney’s when the need arises.

Welfare benefits assessments
Professional Deputies has the in-house expertise to check that clients are receiving their correct entitlement to welfare benefits and tax credits. This service is aimed mainly at solicitors who may not have the relevant in-house experience to assess their client’s entitlement to applicable welfare benefits. Although aimed mainly at solicitors, we are of course more than happy to conduct such assessments for any type of organisation or individual. We can:

Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London    provide a detailed assessment of further potential benefits for clients and their carers
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London    provide advice including a ‘better off calculation’ where applicable
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London    (e.g. comparing whether a family member would be better off if they stopped working and claimed benefits as a carer)
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London    send a letter confirming the advice which can be retained for future reference, copying this to the introducing solicitor
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London    keep the file open in case the client or solicitor have any further queries, having read the letter
Deputyship and Appointeeship Services  London    offer advice on challenging benefit decisions by either the mandatory reconsideration or independent appeals process

With over twelve years of experience advising numerous organisations when it comes to this particular type of work, we are able to offer a range of consultancy services covering areas like: service start-ups, relevant banking software, relevant accounting software, team formations, policies, practices, working with key stakeholders, meeting regulatory requirements, service reviews, charging guidelines and so on.

Professional Deputies – managing the property and financial affairs of vulnerable adults

Professional Deputies
Rowlandson House, 289 – 293 Ballards Lane, London N12 8NP
Phone: 020 3011 5586 (& 5587)
Company Registration No: 07609868.
VAT Registration No: 119 982 966