I am a senior solicitor and Accredited Legal Representative in the Court of Protection team. I specialise in mental capacity and community care law. These involve cases in the Court of Protection concerning an individual’s mental capacity, best interests and deprivation of liberty. I have a particular interest in protecting the rights of young people and adults with learning disabilities and have worked with vulnerable clients and their families since I qualified as a solicitor over 15 years ago.
I am also proud to hold the Mental Capacity (Welfare) Accreditation which means I can act as an Accredited Legal Representative for incapacitated adults in the Court of Protection. This is a recognised quality standard for practitioners who offer advice and representation on health and welfare matters under the Mental Capacity Act 2005. By being awarded this accreditation which is approved by the Law Society, clients can have peace of mind that I have the specialist expertise and experience in mental capacity law. My aim and passion is to protect those that are most vulnerable. My experience and expertise in this area means I can help individuals and families to be guided through this complex area of law.
I have significant expertise in representing clients in the Court of Protection which can include:
- Disputes as to where an individual should live, their contact with family and friends, and their capacity to marry and enter into sexual relationships.
- Applications concerning an individual’s deprivation of liberty, whether this is in a care home, hospital or in the community.
- Disputes in relation to an individual’s care and support needs and whether they are receiving the right level of care. I have experiencing of challenging decisions made by local authorities and health bodies regarding the provision of care and support services. These decisions can involve a refusal by a local authority to undertake an assessment, where a package of care is unsuitable or where that package has been cut. Decisions of this nature leave vulnerable people at risk and our team is here to help you ensure your rights are protected and you receive access to the right level of care and support.
- Support with understanding financial assessments, direct payments and the funding options available for paying for social care.
- Forced marriage protections orders.
I am regularly instructed by the Official Solicitor, professional advocates, including Relevant Person Representatives, family members and carers to represent the interests of incapacitated individuals.
Alongside my busy caseload, I regularly provide training to professional advocates, carers, local authorities and NHS trusts regarding the law relating to mental capacity and community care.
AC and GC (Capacity: Hoarding: Best interests)  EWCOP39 – instructed by the Official Solicitor. This case set out the legal principles and provided much needed guidance to Court of Protection practitioners around clients who had hoarding behaviours or had been diagnosed with hoarding disorder. The case established the relevant information ‘P’ would need to understand to make decisions in respect of their items and belongings which relates to hoarding cases.
If you would like to know more or have any questions, please contact Sonal on 01926 354704.