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Financial Guardianship

The Adults with Incapacity (Scotland) Act 2000 introduced some new arrangements for making decisions and taking actions to safeguard the personal welfare, property, and financial affairs of adults whose capacity to do so is impaired.

Part 6 of the Act allows for an application to be made to the court for:

  • An intervention order authorising a person to take action, or make a decision, of which the adult is incapable.
  • An order appointing a person or office holder as guardian in relation to the adult's property, financial affairs, and personal welfare.
  • An order appointing a person or office holder in relation to a child who will become an adult (age 16) within three months, but such an order will not have effect until the person's 16th birthday.

Who can apply?

An application can be made to the court by any person, including the adult, claiming an interest in the property, financial affairs, or personal welfare of the adult. The applicant will, however, be required to satisfy the court as to their suitability to be appointed.

The local authority has a duty to apply where necessary and nobody else is doing so.

The Office of the Public Guardian provides information, advice, and guidance about powers of attorney, access to funds, guardianship, and intervention orders. It can investigate concerns where the property or financial affairs of an adult seem to be at risk. It also has supervisory duties in respect of financial guardianship and intervention orders.

The Mental Welfare Commission is only interested in financial powers where welfare powers have also been applied.

For more information on financial guardianship, please contact the Office of the Public Guardian on 01324 678300