You should keep a copy of the Capacity Application for your own records.
You must also send a copy of the application to the Relevant Person and any notice parties. The Relevant Person and each notice party must be served copies of the completed Form 55A , Form 55B, Form 55I together with any exhibits at least 21 days before the hearing date assigned by the court office. This process is called serving.
The documents must be served personally on the Relevant Person. This means handing the documents to the Relevant Person and explaining the application to them. The Relevant Person must also be served with a blank Form 55C. This is a form which the Relevant Person can fill in if they want to reply to the application.
The person serving the application on the Relevant Person must also explain that the Relevant Person is permitted and encouraged to participate in, and will be facilitated in participating in, the hearing of the Capacity Application. They must also record any response by the Relevant Person.
Other notice parties can be served by registered post.
Each of the below must be served with copies of the application
- the spouse or civil partner of the Relevant Person
- the cohabitant of the Relevant Person
- a child of the Relevant Person who is aged of 18 years or more
- any existing decision supporter (decision-making assistant, co-decision-maker, attorney or a designated healthcare representative) appointed by or on behalf of the Relevant Person
Where the Relevant Person in his or her reply does not consent to the Capacity Application, you must also serve a copy of that reply on each notice party.
The Court will ask for proof that the documents have been served. This is called an Affidavit of Service. Your solicitor can prepare this for you. The person who served the documents (in most cases the applicant) must swear and sign the affidavits in person in front of an independent Commissioner for Oaths or practising solicitor who will verify the affidavit.
There is a specific form the must be used to verify that the Relevant Person was served – Form 55D.