Ward of Court
Where a person has been certified by a Medical Doctor as being mentally incapable of looking after his / her affairs, and if that person has not created an Enduring Power of Attorney appointing Attorneys to look after his / her affairs in that event, then an application can be made to the President of the High Court to have that person a Ward of Court. The effect of making a person a Ward of Court is that the person is afforded the formal protection of the Court, and all decisions regarding that person and his / her affairs must be validated by the Court.
A Wardship application is usually, though not always, made by a member of the person’s family. After a Court appointed Medical Doctor reviews the person who is the subject of the Wardship application, if the Court is satisfied that he / she is indeed incapable of managing his / her own affairs, the President of the High Court will make that person a Ward of Court.
The High Court Ward of Court Order appoints one or more persons, called “a committee”, to manage the affairs of the person who has been made a Ward of Court. The Wards’ financial assets are lodged into Court and the Committee must seek approval from the Wards of Court Office regarding all financial and medical decisions to be made about the Ward.
Examples of where a Wardship application might arise include:
- Where an elderly person has become mentally incapable of looking of their own affairs, without having created an Enduring Power of Attorney, and they have property or financial matters that must be attended to, or
- Where a minor (a person under 18 years of age) has been awarded substantial damages by a Court and has ongoing care needs.
The process of having a person, who is typically a close relative, made a Ward of Court, is particularly stressful and difficult for those who are making the application i.e. those who will be appointed as that person’s Committee. We advise and support clients through the Wardship application process, and in relation to the management of that person’s affairs once they have been made a Ward of Court.
If you have any queries regarding the creation or registration of an Enduring Power of Attorney, or a Ward of Court application, or if you would like a detailed quotation Contact Us