The Mental Capacity Act 2005 defines mental incapacity as the inability to make a decision caused by an impairment of or disturbance in the functioning of the mind or brain. Examples of people who may lack mental capacity include those with dementia, a severe learning disability, brain injury, stroke or other mental health conditions. However, just because a person has one of these conditions does not necessarily mean that they lack the capacity to make specific decisions about themselves.
Individuals can lack capacity to make some decisions but have capacity to make others and so it is very important to consider whether the individual concerned lacks capacity to make the specific decision in hand.
What is interesting is that a large proportion of people who might be considered by some as being unable to create a lasting power of attorney through lack of mental capacity could actually make one, at least in the early stages of diseases such as dementia. It is therefore very important that individuals with declining mental capacity seek urgent legal advice from a solicitor as soon as possible to avoid the lengthy and costly route of deputyship once mental capacity has been lost.
For anything further, one of our specialists would be delighted to meet you either in our office or in your own home to talk through your requirements and answer any questions. Please contact us at any time.