A hardship case occurs when the Protected Party’s net assets are below £16,000.00 at the time when the Deputyship Anniversary passes. In cases like this, it is not appropriate for the Deputy to have their costs assessed and are limited to take a fixed fee of 4.5% (plus VAT) of the value of the Protected Party’s estate as per the Practice Direction 19B of the Court of Protection Rules (2017).
Deputies are however entitled to take the fixed fee amount for the preparation of the Deputyship Report which is £265.00 (plus VAT) as well as the 4.5% (plus VAT) of the value of the estate.
If the Deputyship costs would take the Protected Party’s assets below £16,000.00, if it was billed in its entirety, then a view would need to be taken whether it is in the Protected Party’s best interests to bill the whole amount or only bill a portion of the costs. If the Protected Party’s assets are fluctuating as a result of interim payments during an ongoing litigation claim, or there are plans to sell a property then it may be suitable to hold off billing the Protected Party until they are in a better financial position.
Georgia Clarke, Senior Costs Draftsman