How Long Does It Take for the Court of Protection To Appoint a Deputy?
The timeline for the Court of Protection to appoint a deputy can vary based on several factors, including the complexity of the case, the availability of information, and the workload of the court. It used to be a particularly long process, taking over 9 months in many cases, but there is now a streamlined application process (the upfront notification pilot) that has shortened the timespan considerably. However, other applications to the Court of Protection may still take a considerable period of time to be dealt with unless there is exceptional urgency.
Here are some factors that can influence the duration of the process:
Having all application documents and evidence in place
If the application submitted to the Court of Protection is complete and includes all the necessary information and documentation, the process can proceed more smoothly and quickly. If certain documents are absent, then the Court will normally order the applicant to produce them before the matter proceeds further.
Failure to notify interested parties
The deputy-in-waiting must notify at least three interested parties of the intended application and notify the Court of any responses received.
Assessment of Mental Capacity
Sometimes, capacity assessments are not always viable and specific permission is needed from the Court to obtain one before the application can be dealt with, which can create delays.
Involvement of the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG)
The OPG is responsible for supervising deputies and ensuring their actions are in the best interests of the individual lacking capacity. The involvement of the OPG could add to the overall timeline.
If there are disputes or objections raised during the application process, it could lead to additional time for resolution.
In urgent cases where immediate decisions need to be made, the Court might grant interim orders to expedite the process for specific matters. The Court may also make a temporary appointment, restricting that individual’s powers to ensure there is no detriment to the protected party.
The Complexity of the Individual’s Situation
Cases involving trickier financial arrangements, significant assets or unique circumstances might require more time for evaluation, and additional evidence could be needed before the Court can make a final decision.
It’s important to note that each case is unique, and the actual duration can vary.
To avoid delays, it’s essential to ensure that all required forms are completed accurately, and that all relevant information is provided to the court.
For more information on Court of Protection, don’t hesitate to consult with our expert, Lewis Hastie.