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20 Sep 20
Court of Protection Awareness Campaign

 

In the midst of a global pandemic, people may feel acutely aware of their own health and the health of those in their care. Many have taken up running or walking (perhaps as an excuse to leave the house during lockdown) and the importance of mental health has also become increasingly important. Unfortunately, the most vulnerable in our society have suffered the most from the COVID19 pandemic. Care homes remain largely in lockdown and those living with chronic conditions must adhere to the strictest rules. It is therefore vitally important that those of us working for the vulnerable do everything we can to mitigate the harm and support those most in need.

Prior to the pandemic, we at Watkins & Gunn launched the “Court of Protection Awareness Campaign’” (#COPAC), with a view to raising awareness and promoting access to justice for the most vulnerable in society. Tom Evans, our Solicitor and Professional Court of Protection Deputy, provided a series of free talks and training sessions for care organisations and non-professional carers. These talks sought to equip various support networks with the knowledge and understanding to ensure the vulnerable people in their care were offered the help and support they needed, whether that be through the appointment of a Deputy by the Court of Protection or by appointing an attorney under a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA).

People with capacity difficulties are often unable to independently seek out the help and advice they need; they are often reliant upon care professionals, friends or family to do so for them. Following #COPAC’s free advice sessions, a vulnerable person’s support network will be able recognise capacity issues and take the initial steps to ensure the person in their care is supported.

What is the Court of Protection?

The Court of Protection is a special Court which can make decisions on behalf of adults who have lost the mental capacity to make certain decisions for themselves. These decisions can relate to a person’s health and welfare or a person’s property and finances. The Court may appoint a Deputy to act as ‘decision-maker’ on behalf of the incapacitated person. A Deputy may be a trusted friend or relative, or a professional.

What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?

A Lasting Power of Attorney is a document by which a person who does have the requisite mental capacity appoints a trusted relative, friend or professional to act as their ‘attorney’. The attorney may be appointed to make decisions regarding health and welfare issues and/or property and finances. These are extremely powerful tools and it is very important that the ‘donor’ (the person making the LPA) is fully aware of the powers which are being transferred to the attorney.

COPAC in the age of COVID

In our ‘new-normal’, we must adapt to the challenges brought about by the everchanging lockdown rules. The Court of Protection Awareness Campaign’s free training and advice sessions are now available to any care organisation in the form of an interactive webinar and Q&A, which can be booked in advance and tailored to the specific needs or concerns of the group.

A COPAC training sessions cover a range of topics, including:

  • Mental capacity in the context of financial affairs
  • Financial safeguarding in care environments
  • The Court of Protection
  • Differences between a Deputy and an Attorney

A training session will also be followed by a Q&A session with our specialist Solicitor.

To book a free digital webinar or for further information contact Tom Evans, our specialist Court of Protection Deputy, by email enquiry to tevans@watkinsandgunn.co.uk or call 07969391465. Find out more about Tom here

Contact us today 0300 1240 400

COVID-19 

We are very much open for business during the “Firebreak” in Wales.

We fully support efforts to control the spread of the pandemic and cannot offer face-to-face appointments at this time. We will however continue to provide our services remotely between 8.30am and 5pm.

Go to our CoVid 19 page for more information.

Stay safe and well.