Sintons’ Court of Protection team thrives despite global pandemic
The specialist Court of Protection team at Sintons has seen an increase in new instructions from across the UK over the past few months, supporting families as normal despite the challenges surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.
The team – comprising of Sophie Robinson-Davies, Sophie Moore and Melissa Gill – has continued to attract high quality work nationally during the pandemic, with clients turning to Sintons to help guide them through what is invariably a difficult and distressing time.
The team acts for a wide range of clients but is particularly well known for representing those who have suffered serious injuries, including brain injuries, and have received or expect to receive compensation payments as a result.
The team – which is establishing itself as a leader in its field, with a fast-growing reputation for providing a first-rate legal service – is often approached by the friends and family of individuals, by law firms and by other professional advisors to assist with the management of a person’s finances both while their claim progresses and once it has settled. The team does not just deal with investing the client’s compensation payment but it also handles day-to-day matters such as buying a client’s clothes or paying friends and family to provide care, overseeing property adaptations and support during their rehabilitation.
An essential part of the team’s role is to manage a client’s finances in the same way that the client would have handled them if they were still able to do so. To do this, the team needs to really get to know each individual client and the people around them so that it fully understands their specific needs and priorities.
Supporting clients during the current pandemic has presented a series of additional challenges for the team. It has been required to come up with pragmatic solutions to problems that have arisen including purchasing exercise equipment for clients who were no longer able to access gyms and rehabilitation centres, furloughing support staff where they were unable to come to work and acquiring electronic devices for virtual conferencing and online therapy.
In addition to the day-to-day support that the team gives clients in relation to their finances, it regularly handles one-off applications – including statutory will applications where a client is no longer capable of giving instructions to make their own will, applications to set up trusts on behalf of individuals who have lost mental capacity and providing advice on access to funding and payments from local authorities and the NHS.
The Court of Protection Team forms part of Sintons’ award-winning Wills, Trusts and Estates Team, which is regularly acknowledged to be one of the leading advisors of its kind in the North of England.
Paul Nickalls, head of the Wills, Trusts and Estates Team, says: “Our Court of Protection team is rightly regarded as a leading name in this field, and we have worked very hard to develop our presence in this very specialised area of law.
“Sophie, Sophie and Melissa are all highly capable specialists who advise clients clearly and directly, yet sensitively, supporting them through distressing times and giving the clarity they need in determining the best course of action for their loved one. While over the past few months this has often been done remotely due to the COVID-19 restrictions, they have remained fully contactable and always available – our commitment to our clients will never change.
Sophie Robinson-Davies is often asked to speak to local and national charities to give their service users advice on supporting individuals who lack capacity to manage their property and financial affairs and is regularly invited to sit on guest panels where she gives advice around specific topics to other professionals working within this area of law. In addition to this, Sophie has recently been appointed as a trustee for a national charity that supports those with additional needs where she hopes to strengthen her skill and experience even further in supporting those who can be considered as the most vulnerable in our communities.
“During the pandemic, the team has continued to win new instructions from across the UK, with many new clients coming to us based on our reputation and recommendation of others. Our commitment to delivering the highest standards of both legal and personal service is what makes us stand out in the field, and that is why we continue to make strong progress and development in this area of the business.”