The role of the Public Guardian is to protect people who lack capacity from abuse.

The Public Guardian, supported by the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG),  helps protect people who lack capacity by:

  • Setting up and managing a register of Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA);
  • Setting up and managing a register of Enduring Powers of Attorney (EPA);
  • Setting up and managing a register of court orders that appoint Deputies;
  • Supervising Deputies, working with other relevant organisations (for example, social services, if the person who lacks capacity is receiving social care);
  • Instructing Court of Protection Visitors to visit people who may lack mental capacity to make particular decisions and those who have formal powers to act on their behalf such as Deputies;
  • Receiving reports from Attorneys acting under LPAs and from Deputies; and
  • Providing reports to the COP, as requested, and dealing with cases where there are concerns raised about the way in which Attorneys or Deputies are carrying out their duties. 

The Public Guardian is also personally responsible for the management and organisation of the OPG, including the use of public money and the way it manages its assets. A separate Public Guardian Board scrutinises the work of the Public Guardian and then reports to the Lord Chancellor.

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