Judge: Mr Justice Charles
Citation:  EWCOP 16
In this case, a friend of VE’s was appointed as her Rule 3A representative. However, it became apparent during the course of the hearing that local authorities had experience of family members and friends finding it difficult to understand what their role as a Rule 3A representative involved. Charles J took the opportunity to provide an explanation for family members or friends appointed as Rule 3A representatives. Key responsibilities for Rule 3A representatives include:
Charles J summarised the role in this way:
In short, the court is asking you, as someone who knows the position on the ground, to consider whether from the perspective of P’s best interests you agree or do not agree that the Court should authorise P’s package of care and support.
The explanatory note also contains a step-by-step guide for dealing with court documentation and for completing a witness statement in form COP 24.
We hope that Charles J’s explanatory note will help family members and friends better understand the role of a Rule 3A representative. Local authorities also have a responsibility to assist family members and friends during the course of an application and should, where appropriate, refer family members and friends to independent legal representatives.