Has anyone had to open a surety bond to become a deputy?

Hello. I’m looking for advice and information please. I am almost through the process of securing Deputyship for my soon to be 18 year old son. My solicitors have told me that in order for me to be successful my husband and I must open a surety bond but I don’t know what it means (aside from a very basic understanding of the term).

Has anyone been in this position? Can anybody offer any guidance?

It’s not a huge amount of money and it will run out in a couple of years so I don’t want to be locked into an bond/agreement I can’t get out of. I’m starting to panic.

Thanks in advance.

Hi

I found this information:

Surety Bonds: Deputy Bond Services









It is the responsibility of the Public Guardian, under the Mental Capacity Act 2005, to ensure a person who does not have the capacity to manage their own financial affairs is protected from financial misappropriation. A Deputy has to be appointed when no Power of Attorney can be registered, meaning that the vulnerable person has not been able to legally state their chosen representative(s).



In order to help safeguard the interest of an individual who has lost capacity (“P”) Deputies are usually required by the Court to obtain “security”. The level of security is set by the Court and is subject to judicial independence. It can be based on a number of factors including the size of P’s estate and the extent to which the Deputy will have access to it. Most Deputies choose to fulfil this requirement by obtaining a Surety Bond.



A Surety Bond is an ‘on demand’ guarantee of the performance of a Deputy. The Bond safeguards the assets and estates of “P” from financial losses suffered by them as a result of the failure of the Deputy to perform the agreed duties expected by the Public Guardian. A Deputy will not be able to start acting for “P” until “security” is in place.



If, through the Deputy’s wrongdoing or misappropriation, “P’s” estate suffers a financial loss the Court may make a claim against the Bond. A claim payment is made by Insurers within 7 working days to ensure “P” is reimbursed for their financial loss. The Insurers have the right to recover the amount of the claim from the Deputy, including any additional costs, expenses or fees.



Once arranged, the Bond remains in force until discharged by the Court. The Deputy does not receive any protection from the Bond; its sole purpose is to protect “P”.














It is the responsibility of the Public Guardian, under the Mental Capacity Act 2005, to ensure a person who does not have the capacity to manage their own financial affairs is protected from financial misappropriation. A Deputy has to be appointed when no Power of Attorney can be registered, meaning that the vulnerable person has not been able to legally state their chosen representative(s).



In order to help safeguard the interest of an individual who has lost capacity (“P”) Deputies are usually required by the Court to obtain “security”. The level of security is set by the Court and is subject to judicial independence. It can be based on a number of factors including the size of P’s estate and the extent to which the Deputy will have access to it. Most Deputies choose to fulfil this requirement by obtaining a Surety Bond.



A Surety Bond is an ‘on demand’ guarantee of the performance of a Deputy. The Bond safeguards the assets and estates of “P” from financial losses suffered by them as a result of the failure of the Deputy to perform the agreed duties expected by the Public Guardian. A Deputy will not be able to start acting for “P” until “security” is in place.



If, through the Deputy’s wrongdoing or misappropriation, “P’s” estate suffers a financial loss the Court may make a claim against the Bond. A claim payment is made by Insurers within 7 working days to ensure “P” is reimbursed for their financial loss. The Insurers have the right to recover the amount of the claim from the Deputy, including any additional costs, expenses or fees.



Once arranged, the Bond remains in force until discharged by the Court. The Deputy does not receive any protection from the Bond; its sole purpose is to protect “P”.






An official version:

Public Guardian practice note (SD15): OPG’s approach to surety bonds (web version) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

It’s a form of insurance to protect your son’s money against any financial misuse or loss.

I hope that helps.

Kind regards

Samuel

Hi Samuel

How very kind you are in helping me out. I’m extremely grateful.

My solicitor did not inform me this would be required in order to become a deputy. I still don’t fully understand the implications for us (will it be cancelled once my son’s money runs out or will I have to reapply to the courts) I think I have a steep learning curve ahead of me.

Thanks again for your help.

Yes we had one - can’t remember offhand the amount - when we had Deputyship for both Finance and Health & Welfare. It never became an issue and as I recall we just had to account in simple terms for our son’s assets each year. The idea is that it is a form of insurance just in case you were to run off with your relative’s money (sounds awful I know but I guess it has happened and the courts need to take this into account).

Thank you I appreciate you taking the time to reply. Best wishes.