Wed, 25 Mar 2020
At this time of unprecedented national public health emergency we would like to update you as to how we will maintain our Court of Protection services during the outbreak.
From the outset, we recognise that no matter who you act for in the Court of Protection that your clients will be concerned and in some respects at heightened risk. We also appreciate that our professional clients will be facing extraordinary challenges.
Our aim, as a team, is to assist all our clients throughout the outbreak. Each team in the No5 Barristers' Chambers Public Law Group is currently reviewing their operations to maximise and adapt the assistance we can provide to our clients.
Maintaining our service
All of our clerking team are now working remotely and can be contacted through 0845 210 5555 or [email protected] . Each barrister in the team is now able to work remotely and all of the team are able to attend conferences by telephone, Lifesize, Facetime, Skype for Business and Zoom. Likewise, to assist our clients, our clerking team are happy to arrange and provide a Lifesize video conferencing platform for:
- Round table meetings;
- MDTs and best interest meetings
- Pre-hearing discussions/negotiations
Each of our barristers will do their utmost to meet their current Court of Protection commitments and to work with our clients to allow us to case manage cases safely and appropriately. Likewise, we are committed to providing appropriately experienced and qualified counsel in the event of:
- A barrister being required to undertake public or judicial duties on a full-time basis.
- A barrister being ill or being required to undertake shielding.
Extending our service
In the last week we have already seen the nature of our practice shift, there is an increase of disputes in relation to hospital discharge, access to care homes and serious medical treatment cases. Individual members are being sought out to advise on the implications of the virus outbreak for a variety of social care and clinical providers.
To meet this increased demand, the team have agreed to:
- Ensure that senior members of the team are available and able to respond quickly to emergency applications. Our working hours will be flexible to meet the change in demand and working patterns.
- Work closely with the clerking team to make sure that cases are triaged and dealt with by suitably experienced counsel.
- Make counsel available to be seconded to our clients to ease the burden
- Share learning and experiences throughout the outbreak both internally, with those who instruct us, and with our colleagues at the Court of Protection Bar.
We wish all of our clients, colleagues and friends our best wishes during this trying time. Please let us know how we may help.
Team Leader, Court of Protection
Practice Director, Public Law