If you have made an Enduring Power of Attorney or Lasting Powers of Attorney, then the attorneys who you have appointed would make decisions on your behalf. If you lose mental capacity and do not have an old Enduring or Lasting Power of Attorney then an application should be made to the Court of Protection for someone to be appointed as your ‘deputy’, who would then make decisions on your behalf.
The better alternative however is to plan ahead and to make Lasting Powers of Attorney (both in respect of property as well as welfare) as part of your general estate planning, which could be used if necessary. It is often advisable to register the LPA immediately with the Office of the Public Guardian, as this will ensure that it can be used immediately, for instance if the donor is temporarily unable to make decisions, although he may still have capacity.
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If you've not already made an enduring power of attorney or a lasting power of attorney, then an application needs to be made to the court of protection to appoint a deputy to make decisions on your behalf. However, the far better approach is to plan ahead for this and to make lasting powers of attorney as part of your general estate planning. It is possible to make lasting powers of attorney both for property and financial affairs and for health and welfare. We would recommend that you register your lasting powers of attorney with the Office of the Public Guardian as soon as they have been signed by everybody, so that they are available for use immediately should this become necessary.