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09 APR 2013

PROPERTY AND AFFAIRS: Re Harcourt: The Public Guardian v A [2013] COPLR 69

(Court of Protection, Senior Judge Denzil Lush, 31 July 2012)

The woman executed a power of attorney in favour of her daughter who had failed to keep on top of the care home fees, failed to provide the woman with her pocket money, had taken out credit cards in her name and had made frequent unaccounted-for cash withdrawals.

The woman lacked capacity to revoke the LPA or to require her attorney to produce accounts and financial records. The Office of the Public Guardian opened an investigation into the daughter's conduct of her mother's affairs and sought an order that the LPA be suspended and the woman's bank accounts frozen.

The judge revoked the LPA. The daughter had behaved in a way that was not in the best interests of her mother and as she lacked capacity to revoke the LPA herself the court had power to do so pursuant to s 22(4) of the Mental Capacity Act 2005. While taking such a course constituted a violation of the woman's rights under Art 8 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms 1950, it was both necessary and proportionate to do so in these circumstances.


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