Community Care / Court of Protection
Adult Social Care
Working in this field calls for particular care, sensitivity and responsibility. For individual clients, the work we do often involves their fundamental and sometimes most intimate rights, such as liberty, health, personal dignity, welfare, safety and private and family life. For providers and local government bodies, we understand the importance of adhering to standards, budgetary control, achieving and maintaining sustainability, ensuring proper processes and systems and the real challenges of operating with reduced public resources.
Members of our team are routinely involved in difficult and cutting-edge issues, such as changes in eligibility for care, withdrawal of services, alterations in service provision because of re-structuring and budgetary pressures, personal budgets and Resource Allocation Systems, and the introduction of the Care Act 2014. Our work includes cross-boundary cases, where a number of different local authorities may be involved, and the allocation of responsibility between health care and social care organisations.
Often this work will involve human rights and equality issues. Many of our members have been at the forefront of developing the law in these areas, and are well-placed to deal with these issues in the social care sphere.
Our specialist team works for clients in England and Wales, and in other jurisdictions. We have expertise in legal proceedings in all courts and tribunals, including judicial review, up to and including the Supreme Court. Advisory work is undertaken both in relation to individual cases and also in the formulation and drafting of strategies and policies.
Members of our team furthermore offer services for Alternative Dispute Resolution, including mediation, both as independent mediators and as legal representatives for parties involved in ADR processes.
As for our publications in this area, Christopher Baker is an editor and editorial board member of the Community Care Law Reports (LAG) and Jonathan Manning and Robert Brown are the authors of Judicial Review Proceedings: A Practitioner’s Guide (3rd ed. LAG, 2013).
Court of Protection and Mental Capacity
We have a dedicated and experienced team that specialises in all matters relating to the Court of Protection. We regularly advise and act for vulnerable adults, family members, local authority clients and healthcare bodies in bringing and defending applications under the Mental Capacity Act 2005. Our work includes cases relating to determinations of capacity, best interests decisions on welfare and finance, challenges to authorisations under the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards, and the appointment of deputies and donees.
The team’s expertise and strengths in various linked areas of practice (adult social care, social housing, public law, education and property) means we are well placed to advise practically and tactically on appropriate applications to the Court of Protection and the High Court.
The team is well aware that these kinds of cases often arise on an emergency basis and therefore members make themselves available to act at short notice and out of hours.