Landmark public and media access to the Court of Protection

Senior Partner David YoungThe Court of Protection, whose proceedings were hitherto held behind closed doors, is opening its hearings to the public and media under a new pilot scheme.

The Pilot Practice Direction applies to new proceedings issued in England or Wales from 29 January 2016. The scheme, which will operate for at least six months, means that, by default, hearings will be held in public with reporting restrictions in force to protect identities. For the media and public to be barred from a hearing, a further court order will be needed. This also applies to proceedings issued before 29 January where a further hearing is scheduled after proceedings commence.

In another move to aid transparency, the way in which court lists are displayed will be changed to provide a descriptor of what the case is about, helping the media and public to decide whether to attend. The lists will be published weekly in court buildings and at www.courtserve.net.

Legal help with Court of Protection issues

The Court of Protection makes decisions about welfare and finance for people who cannot make those decisions themselves and in legal terminology ‘lack mental capacity’.

The court can decide whether someone lacks mental capacity to make a particular decision and can appoint a deputy to look after a person’s affairs if they did not put in place a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) before losing capacity.

Gaby Hardwicke Senior Partner David Young (pictured) leads our team that deals with Court of Protection matters. Contact him at or 01424 730945 for expert help or advice on Court of Protection issues.

To learn about our services for older people visit our care for the elderly page. 

Posted: 05 February 2016

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