Mental capacity concerns an individual's ability to make decisions about their life, whether it relates to their money, property, health, welfare or receiving medical treatment.
When someone loses mental capacity or is vulnerable, it can be a very challenging time for families. This is especially true where there is substantial wealth or a family business involved and there is disagreement within the family about how these are managed and safeguarded.
What we do
We have specialist knowledge and expertise advising high and ultra-high net worth clients about complex capacity issues and we have a top tier ranked private wealth disputes team who represent clients in the Court of Protection. We act for attorneys, deputies, family members and litigation friends.
Our experience and advice covers the full range of decisions an individual may need to make, including relating to their property and affairs, health and welfare, and medical treatment.
We advise clients on how to plan for their future in the event of incapacity, or if an individual has already lost capacity, the options for families to manage and make decisions about their relative’s affairs on their behalf, including making applications to the Court of Protection.
Sadly, when an individual becomes vulnerable or lacks capacity, it can create opportunities for others to financially exploit them and coerce them into making decisions they would not have otherwise made. We can act for clients in claims to recover misappropriated assets and to remove attorneys or deputies where they have misused their authority.
What we advise on
We advise clients across the whole range of capacity and Court of Protection matters and associated claims in the Chancery Division of the High Court, including in the following areas:-
- Enduring Powers of Attorney and Lasting Powers of Attorney
- Obtaining an assessment of capacity
- Disputes about whether an individual has capacity
- Capacity to marry
- Capacity to make a will
- Tax planning applications for lifetime gifts on behalf of those who lack capacity
- Statutory Wills
- Applications to be appointed a deputy on behalf of an individual lacking capacity
- Applications to replace a trustee who has lost capacity
- Applications on behalf of protected parties and minors to approve a settlement, including under the Variation of Trusts Act
- Applications for authority to litigate
- Removing attorneys and deputies
- Financial abuse claims
- Undue influence and applications under the inherent jurisdiction
- Medical treatment and welfare disputes, including life-sustaining treatment decisions
- Dealing with overseas assets and obtaining recognition of powers overseas
- Family and business governance in light of incapacity.