Independent Mental Capacity Advocate & Relevant Person’s Representative Legal Advice

What are Independent Mental Capacity Advocates (IMCA) and Relevant Person’s Representatives (RPR)?

An IMCA supports and represents someone with a lack of capacity in the decision-making process when important decisions are being made for them. These decisions tend to be about medical treatments and long-term accommodation.

When supporting and representing someone the IMCA gathers and evaluates information, discusses the person’s wishes and feelings, and if needed challenges decisions.

An RPR has a similar role to an IMCA but this is usually a family member or close friend of the person. The role of an RPR is to regularly contact the person and support and represent them, which can include making a complaint, application to the Court of Protection or creating a review on the person’s behalf.

Free Initial Discussion

For a no-obligation discussion, call our specialist Mental Health and Court of Protection solicitors on 01642 247656 or use our contact form, and we will call you back.

When is an Independent Mental Capacity Advocate appointed?

You will be usually appointed an IMCA if:

  • You do not have someone appointed to make decisions for you (such as an attorney)
  • You do not have a court-appointed deputy to make decisions
  • You do not have a close family member or unpaid carer to support you in making decisions
  • You have not nominated someone to be consulted on matters that affect you
  • You are not detained under the Mental Health Act 1983

How are Independent Mental Capacity Advocates appointed?

In England, an IMCA is appointed by a local authority but in Wales, they will be appointed by a local Health Board or other NHS bodies.

Court of Protection Advice & Support

There may be a range of reasons why IMCAs and RPRs need to speak with Court of Protection Solicitors. Should you require legal advice, please contact us for further information.

At Watson Woodhouse, we understand dealing with mental health can be a distressing experience. Therefore, we ensure that we provide an excellent level of service by being approachable and easily giving information to understand. We have an experienced, knowledgeable team.

Our team can guide and help you with:

Do I have to pay for legal representation?

If you are the Relevant Person’s Representative bringing a Section 21 challenge in relation challenging  an individual’s accommodation and care, you can get free legal help without needing to show your bank statements or other documents. This is because Legal Aid is available automatically for these challenges.

But if you are not a family member representing the person and instead you are involved in the case separately, then your eligibility for free legal help will depend on your income and the merits of the case. To check your income, we would need to look at your bank statements and payslips, if you have a job. If you receive certain benefits such as Universal Credit, then your income may automatically qualify you. If you don’t receive benefits, we would need your payslips to assess your eligibility for free legal aid based on your income.

As for the merits,  it depends on the situation of the case. We would need to talk to you to find out what your role is in the case and what you want to achieve. Then we can determine if you are eligible for free legal help based on the merits.

How Watson Woodhouse Can Help

We are here to help.

Call us for a FREE and confidential consultation with a specialist solicitor on 01642 247656.

Alternatively, complete our online contact form, and one of our solicitors will be in touch.

Watson Woodhouse Solicitors provide support to clients throughout England and Wales.

We are here to help

Call us for a confidential consultation with a specialist solicitor today on 01642 247656 or on our 24/7 Emergency Helpline 01642 917175

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