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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
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Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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I have a 51 yr old brain damaged son, he is not able to

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I have a 51 yr old brain damaged son, he is not able to speak, read, write etc. I have applied for an over 50's insurance policy, basically towards his funeral at some point. I have been told by the Insurers that I have to produce something equivalent to a power of attorney document which I have no idea how to do as all his disability money has always gone into my bank account and this is the first time anything like this has been requested. Advice please as to what I need to do.
Many thanks
Grazina Lockley

As you are aware, the over 50s life-insurance policies require no medical questions to be answered and there is guaranteed acceptance. The problem is that unfortunately, your son cannot apply for it because he does not have capacity. Hence, what you need to do is apply to court to become a deputy over his affairs which actually gives you the power to deal with his bank account and his finances.

Here is a government website on exactly that.

The paperwork is quite complicated and full of traps for the unwary. Hence, if you have no experience of dealing with this, you might want to get a solicitor to deal with it for you. It’s not a particularly quick process and can take up to 6 months. A solicitor would charge up to new £2000 for making the application and dealing with everything which is a reflection of how much work is involved.

Do get a letter from the insurance company confirming that they will take the application from you under the circumstances because you don’t want to incur the £2000 cost if they will not take the application. If you are dealing with the insurance company directly, what you might want to do is go through a Financial Adviser instead, who can advise you on the paperwork and get confirmation from the insurance company of their requirements.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Please don’t forget to rate the service positive. Is an important part of the process by which experts get paid.

We can still exchange emails if you wish.

Best wishes.


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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Update. I made enquiries of my own yesterday having baulked at the cost and ended up speaking to the court of protection. Although the main gist of your answer is correct I have found out that it is possible to apply for a single deputyship which costs 400.00 as opposed to 2000.00 and because Stephen receives certain benefits he would get exemption. I need to download four forms and it will take approx 20 weeks to complete. So thank you for the advice but it wasn't completely 100% correct.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I would like to amend my rating to 3stars as since reading my answer I made enquiries of my own and found that the main gist of my answer was correct however there were details which solicitor did not include which I found out myself which made quite a big difference.

Thank you for the update.

The single issue option in my opinion is not good value because if another issue crops up in the future, with something else, you are then faced with going through the whole process again.

Your son may get exemption from the £400 court fee but if you use solicitors, because the paperwork is quite complicated, you will not get exemption from the solicitor’s fees. The £2000 I referred to is the cost of solicitors doing it.

The court application fee for any application is £400 as you will read here.,%20exemptions%20and%20remissions.pdf

so in essence, it doesn’t matter which application you make, there is a £400 fee for which there may be an exemption. However regardless of which application you make, if you use solicitors, you will have to pay their fee on top. Kind regards

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply but this would only be a one off, Stephen has no savings or estate as such. I have cancelled the said insurance applied for and been to an undertaker and bought a funeral plan without any hassle whatsoever. Thanks for your help.

I’m glad to have helped. Incidentally, with these over 50s plans, you have to bear in mind that the insurance company are in it to make a profit and hence, they are not usually particularly good value.

Kind regards