Until a child reaches the age of 18, their parents (in most cases) will have Parental Responsibility. This means that those with Parental Responsibility can make decisions about their child’s care and upbringing and make important decisions which include deciding:
- Where your child lives
- Whether or not they receive particular medical treatment
- How and where they are educated
- Whether they can leave the country, either on holiday or permanently
- What happens with your child’s property.
Once a child however, reaches the age of 18, parents then lose their parental responsibility and no longer have any legal responsibilities or automatic rights to make decisions for their child and professionals are given a greater role.
For parents of a child with a disability or vulnerability this can be hugely stressful particularly if there is a dispute as to whether your child should continue to live with you or move to alternative accommodation and what package of support will be provided.
The Court of Protection has power to make decisions on behalf of a person who lacks the mental capacity to make their own decisions or they can appoint a Deputy who is given specific powers to make decisions on behalf of that person.
Applications to the court may be necessary where:
- The decision to be made concerns medical treatment to which the person cannot consent
- The decision is difficult or complex and requires the court to decide
- There is a dispute between relevant parties over a particular proposed course of action
- The person who lacks capacity needs ongoing help with decisions and the appointment of a Deputy is considered the best way of assisting with the decision making.
How we can help:
We have a specialist legal team who are instructed by families and advocates as well as regularly being instructed by the Official Solicitor in cases relating to a person’s well-being including medical treatment, mental capacity and financial issues. We can:
- Liaise with the Clinical Commissioning Group regarding care and support
- Ensure any decision made is in the best interest of the young person
- Applications to the Court of Protection
- Advice in relation to health and welfare disputes
Legal aid is also available in certain circumstances. To discuss your situation and to see how we can help, please contact our team on 01926 354704 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.