EG, Re [2015] EWCOP 6 (11 February 2015)

Posted on Tuesday, March 24th, 2015

Julie FitzpatrickThis judgment concerned an application by the Public Guardian to revoke a Lasting Power of Attorney for property and financial affairs.

EG, who was born in 1930, had been diagnosed as having vascular dementia and had executed a Lasting Power of Attorney (‘LPA’) for property and financial affairs and an LPA for health and welfare, in which she appointed her daughter, GB, and her eldest son, SG, to be her attorneys. The LPAs were registered on 3 December 2012.

On 18 August 2014 the Public Guardian applied to the Court of Protection for an order under section 22(4)(b) of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 for the revocation and cancellation of the registered property and financial affairs LPA made by EG, on the grounds that, inter alia, GB had made gifts of £15,000 to herself and £20,000 to each of her three brothers, and that EG had only £17,465.54 left.

GB objected to the application and stated that she was in financial difficulties since she had to give up her job so that she could become her mother’s carer. Senior Judge Lush found that the gifts totalling £75,000 far exceeded the limited authority to make gifts conferred on an attorney by section 12(2) of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and in this respect GB and SG had contravened their authority as attorneys. He went on to say that “the attorneys should have applied to the Court of Protection for an order under section 23(3)(c) or 23(4) of the Mental Capacity Act. It is likely that the court would have been sympathetic towards GB in view of the fact that she had given up her job to care for her mother, and it would probably have awarded an allowance to her from the donor’s funds.” The LPA was duly revoked and an alternative deputy for property and affairs was appointed.

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