Applying to become a person’s deputy for property and finances can be a lengthy and complex process. Applications often take upwards of six months to complete, even for relatively straightforward cases. This can cause difficulties for the person concerned, especially if they need help with their finances or assistance with a difficult decision sooner rather than later.
Currently, once a deputyship application has been sent to the Court for consideration, a notification process must then be followed to notify at least three people who know the person well (for instance family members, medical professionals and care workers). This process can delay the application, especially if it is not completed correctly and within the required timescales.
The Court has now reviewed the notification process and is introducing a new system from January 2023. The new system will require potential deputies to carry out the notification process before they submit the application to the Court, so that any responses and a record of those notified can be considered by the Court at the same time as the application itself (rather than afterwards).
New notification forms and a Practice Direction will be available from Gov.uk shortly and applications received after 1st January 2023 must follow the new process.