A Deputyship Order has a very similar effect to a Power of Attorney in that it gives someone else the ability to look after your affairs on your behalf such as to sign documents, withdraw money etc. The big difference is that although a Power of Attorney is something that you set up yourself (if you are the donor, or person giving the power), a Deputyship Order is a court order. It appoints the people making the application (“the Deputys”) to manage the affairs of the person who has lost their capacity (“the Patient”).
Deputyship Orders can be time consuming and costly
A Deputyship Order takes around 7 months to put in place, but potentially much longer. Compare that to a Lasting Power of Attorney which can be prepared quickly, and then registered in around 2 months.
It is a much more expensive process than creating and registering a Power of Attorney.
There are continuing costs and requirements for the rest of the Patient’s life: insurance bonds to purchase from the court, annual reports to be filed, and every time you want to do something more than pay a bill for the Patient you need to apply to the court for permission (this can involve a £371 court fee, and legal fees too, and yet another long delay every time).
The Court can also appoint anyone who applies on your behalf, not just your family. Unfortunately this can feasibly be someone who you would not necessarily want to deal with your affairs, or even Social Services. We strongly recommend people make Lasting Powers of Attorney as soon as possible to avoid this potential risk.
Court of Protection
The other problem with Court of Protection Deputyship Orders is that they only give you limited powers. You have to apply for permission to make certain decisions and each time you will be paying more court fees and waiting for months for the decision to come through. Also, just knowing whether or not you need permission can be a minefield.
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