The Law Society has issued a practice note to assist solicitors who receive a request from a property and financial affairs attorney or deputy for access to the will of an individual who has lost mental capacity.
It sets out when a solicitor can safely recognise the authority of a property and financial affairs attorney or deputy to see a client’s will, and when they should refer them to the Court of Protection.
The guidance is intended to speed up simple and straightforward requests to access a client’s will while also ensuring that solicitors protect the best interests of their clients. It includes a flowchart depicting the steps a solicitor should take on receiving a request, and useful template letters for notifying a client of a request and responding to both attorneys and deputies.
The practice note has been issued in conjunction with the SRA, Legal Services Ombudsman, OPG, Court of Protection and STEP.