• Posted

Some adults are less able to protect themselves than others, so good legal advice for them or their carers is essential.

A vulnerable adult may have difficulty expressing their wishes and managing their own affairs, making them susceptible to financial abuse or fraud. The Care Act introduced a statutory framework for safeguarding vulnerable adults who are often considered to lack mental capacity, or whose capacity may fluctuate.

Various legal steps can be taken to protect the vulnerable, some by the vulnerable person themselves and others by their family or carers. Where a person already lacks mental capacity a suitable friend, family member or acquaintance may apply to the Court of Protection to become a Deputy in order to control their property and finances. But if no one is able to take up that role or if the day to day management of the vulnerable person’s finances by family members may lead to suspicion by other family members, a lawyer can step in and act. Debenhams Ottaway regularly acts as a Deputy and oversees the day to day management of vulnerable adults’ financial affairs.

A Deputy can also be appointed to deal with health and welfare decisions and our lawyers can advise family members, friends or other professionals in making an application to the Court of Protection and in running the patient’s affairs afterwards.

We can help to bring family members together before disputes escalate, saving on future legal fees and family breakdowns.

Debenhams Ottaway can also represent Attorneys, Deputies, family members, personal representatives and the individual themselves in relation to issues arising from the funding of long-term care. We have established a strong working relationship with healthcare and community service providers to keep vulnerable adults in Hertfordshire safe.

The contents of this article are intended for general information purposes only and shall not be deemed to be, or constitute legal advice. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss as a result of acts or omissions taken in respect of this article.